To fb or not to fb?

A gadget ceases to be one when its absence has a negative effect on your social and/or professional life. I was one of the last people to buy a mobile phone and that was only after I have started taking long distance trains. Long distance trains tend to be late. The person waiting for me at the other end wanted to know.

I know a woman who does not want to own a mobile due to presumed health dangers. She is very difficult to get in touch with and people in her social circle complain about her all the time. She misses appointments or appears to ones that have been canceled. ‘We wrote you an email, just as you asked’, people would tell her, or: ‘We called you at home and told your mother.’ Thinking by themselves: just buy the damn mobile and be like everybody else! Me too, I was displeased with her once. For not having a mobile.

I must be the only person in the Whole Wired World not to be on Facebook. Despite a ton of invitations systematically thrown away. Why? For once, I don’t like its boys-dormitory-kind of communication style with all the poking and the partying. I have a very large and very dispersed circle of friends and yet I am not a smalltalk kind of person. If I need to talk to somebody, I will write him or her an email. I don’t feel like gathering hundreds of friends, who are already my real friends, in their digital form once again. I don’t feel like having a stream of their smallest daily news flooding my Inbox: who has befriended whom, who had dinner where, whose pictures are on show. I have to defend my choice not to join all the time. I am a very social person: I tend to respond to every message I get as soon as I can. Continuing to be a social person on FB would mean another full-time job.

Lately a close friend published some pictures on FB, which I would like to see you and which, of course, I cannot. Because I am not on FB. Is it slowly starting to affect my social life? Will I, as with the mobile, become one of the last to succumb to the new gadget? Are people starting to complain about ME? Am I missing ‘it’?

Whatever ‘it’ may be?

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