Today I was finally able to empty my Facebook account. I totally deleted all my content, or at least the one I was able to delete, since not all the content is deletable. For example, you can’t delete the events you’ve been interested in, invited, or you have attended, or you can’t delete some of the pages you liked, because they aren’t available anymore. It’s quite interesting the amount of data some of us have poured into that social network. If you have an account in Facebook I invite you to go into Download Your Data section, download it, and peek into what Facebook has about you. And I didn’t say knows because it probably knows more that all that data you are able to download and they probably have a more detailed profile of you in their end.
Well, as I’ve already explained —more or less— in a previous post, Facebook has stopped to feel right as a place to share content. The problem isn’t really privacy or anything like that —although is an importan issue. It’s just that doesn’t fit in what I want to share with the World right now. It just feels that falls short when I want to share the content I want to share now —rich, complex and more elaborated.
There is also another reason… I don’t want a third party to own my content. Or at leas I don’t want a third party owning my content that makes really bloody difficult to delete or manage my content. I took me a couple of days to delete all my content from Facebook —and the help of a couple1 of scripts/Chrome-extentions— because they don’t have any option or section in their site to proper manage your content. You just either can download your content or delete your account completely —or they say they do— and of course, delete post by post, like by like and comment by comment. Which is incredible painful.
I guess they don’t want to make things easy for users because our content is their most precious treasure. Facebook has its value because users, like you and me, have been pouring content about us day after day for the last years —a decade in some cases. I signed up in Facebook 10 years ago (yeah, I’m really that old). All of that content is really gold because it’s useful to make profiles of people —anonymous or not— so they can sell products, services and maybe political ideas to you. Perhaps the latter isn’t totally true, but I assure you that it’s the the wet dream of more than one politician.
So… why you don’t just delete your account and that’s it?
The sort answer is, just because I can I want to mess around with Facebook. The real and long one is, Facebook still has some value for me —a residual one, but value. Through Facebook I can still be in contact with you, or at least you can contact me, and I’m not talking about Facebook Messenger only. There are still a lot of people that use Facebook to be in contact with their love ones —family, friends and that weir guy they met somewhere else. That’s —more or less— my case —specially the latter one . Most of my friends still use Facebook in their daily lives, they share part of their lives there and know about others lives there. This is usually specially the case when you have more or less an international life and you travel and have been living in different places at different parts of your life. Facebook make it easy to be in contact with people that is really far far away from you, even when you just log-ins once per week.
If you want to know how I delete the content of my Facebook account, it’s really easy. I just installed on my Chrome browser the Delete All Facebook Post (no longer online) extension and then I begin to wipe posts and likes year by year. I have to use it more than a couple of times each year —sometimes when things were really stuck, i.e. I had too much activity during a period of time, I had to pass it like 5 times and sometimes I used it on specific months with a lot of content at lower speed.
Then, I reviewed manually the activity log and untag me from photos and posts, and delete posts and unlike post that the extension missed. One tool that can be a little bit helpful from Facebook side is this “Manage post” button that you can find in your profile.
There, you select post in bulk/batch and delete them that way. But, be careful, because not all the post can be delete that way and if you make a batch selection and one of the posts can’t be delete through this tool —and you have to go to the post— it isn’t going to allow you to delete all the others. So, try to select one by one and if the options at the bottom of the page change deselect the last one.
My intention is to backpedal a little bit my social media and specially Facebook . I’ll stop to share stuff in my Facebook profile but I’ve created a page in Facebook were I’m going to share the posts I write here. The page interface it’s much much more friendly and easier to manage the content. You just have to select all and click on delete to have again a clean slate. In fact, I just did it before I wrote this post because since I changed the url of this website and the url of the posts, the entries there didn’t have any sense. So I have to repost all of them with a backdate —the one they where publish.
I’m going to continue to interact on Twitter —although I know Twitter is also far from being perfect and I don’t really like the direction it’s heading— and probably in Instagram —and storing those photos in my Tumblr so they are really mine. I also want to return to the more quiet and static Flickr where I want to post, little by little the photos I wan to share with you.
The latest Facebook events, not only the Cambridge Analytica ones, but the recent data breach from Facebook 2, in addition to John Oliver report about Facebook , which I really encourage you to watch, made me to finally delete my data —and I asure you that’s something I really wanted to do for long time. Perhaps, you’ve noticed that I haven’t post in Facebook for a while —sorry if you can’t check my post history now — or perhaps you don’t, but my dissatisfaction with Facebook isn’t something new. It has to do more with who and how owns
the my data than with privacy issues and with the fact that I consider Facebook not the right place to share, learn and debate about ideas because it’s a toilet.
Social Book Post Manager & Delete All Facebook Post (no longer online). Specially the latter one. Anyhow, I have to pass the scripts several times and usually the best results are yield when you go year by year. In the end, you have to delete by hand of the posts because they need more than hot water to get rid of them . ↩