In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scanda
l (an extraordinarily ugly story for the age of Trump), I have deleted my Facebook account.
This was a cheap gesture, for me, since I’ve barely ever used Facebook. People used to think I was kidding when I’d explain my dislike of it as partly “aesthetic,” but it’s true – I always found the FB interface – the page itself – not only counter-intuitive but also bizarrely ugly. Going to it was like returning to the Yahoo! homepage circa 1999 after getting used to Google. Cramped and overcrowded, impossible to customize in the ways you’d want to, horrible fonts … It always surprised me that more people didn’t seem to mind, or notice.
But the larger issue is politics. How do you stay on the side of transparency, decency, and democracy, and not on the side of cynicism and money-above-all (Facebook), especially when that turns out to mean being in bed with actual power-hungry democracy-despising Fascist-sympathizers (Uncle Donnorhea; Uncle Vlad; Cambridge Analytica.)
We need our democracies back. About what this will require, Mark Zuckerberg (allegedly toying with a presidential run) seems as naïve as can be.