I started using Facebook 4 years ago so that I can play some of the games offered on it, particularly Mafia Wars. Ever since then I've been an everyday user of Facebook. I'd open Facebook a few times an hour, update my status frequently, and stay in touch with my family and friends over messenger. The social network was extremely addicting. Many people quit it to stop their addiction. But for me it was different, I quit it because my addiction stopped.
I never thought I'd quit it though. Why quit something you enjoy doing it? My family referred to me as mr online since I'd never go offline.
Most of the blame is due to decisions made by Facebook, and the rest was because of some decisions they never made. In short, the company stopped focusing on the user and instead paid more attention to advertisers. Facebook became a website for advertisers to reach the right people more than it is for people to connect with those they cared the most about.
Facebook started placing so many adverts on their website. It started off with the endurable sidebar. Introduced suggested posts, and rumored auto playing video ads were on the way too. I'm not entirely sure how Facebook does it, but my newsfeed on the web always started with an advertised post.
I'm no longer connecting with friends, but with advertisers who know everything about me, from where I live to which apps I have installed on my phone. And this brings me to the next point.
Even though I know most popular websites and apps are constantly tracking my location, seeing which users I talk to, and what I like to do. Yet, I use these services because they provide me with useful ways to communicate. I'm ready to sacrifice some of my privacy for that. I give all of my data to websites and I don't really care. That's how it was for Facebook, but not anymore.
They took it too far. Knowing which apps I have installed on my phone? Now that's not acceptable. Meanwhile other competitors are providing me with better features than Facebook, and without all the sponsored crap and creepy privacy settings. The video below says it all.
When I asked my friend why he isn't switching to Google+ he told me that if you have a car for all your life, then find out that there's another car that's slightly better then why would you switch?
That used to be true, in the days when Google+ first launched. It was better, but not too much better. Right now Google+ offers a lot more features, and doesn't advertise in my feed, and doesn't spy on me as much.
Same with twitter. It serves a slightly different purpose to Facebook and G+, and it does it very well.
Although most of my friends are still on Facebook, very few are actually active. They scroll through their newsfeed without interacting with any posts or updating their status.
On the other hand, most of my friends are active on Twitter. I have a few friends on G+, but the rest are other bloggers from around the world. I find most useful and interesting content on G+ and Twitter.
At first Facebook was the best. It combines chatting, status, commenting, liking, games, news, funny pictures, and a lot more. Due to the highly unreasonably management made by Facebook, and how the company switched towards being a heavily advertised site; users began looking for alternatives.
Sharing pictures now takes place mostly on other websites and apps such as tumblr, ifunny, 9gag and Instagram (which is now part of Facebook).
For news and updates I use twitter and G+. And for games I .. well I use gaming websites. Facebook was amazing for bringing all of these features at one place, but their dominance made the website and app become worse over time. Until eventually, users (like me) who were once addicts to the network are now deactivating their accounts.
Quitting Facebook took a lot of time for me. The idea would pop into my head every once in a while and I'd reject it. I mean, it's Facebook! What am I gonna do without it.
Then I was fed up of ads, fed up of privacy issues, and realized that I wasn't really enjoying my time on Facebook. I watched the Google I/O keynote and fell in love with the new features in G+. So I deleted the app, and quit Facebook for a while. Maybe for good.