FACEBOOK: Stop Being a Narcissist — It's Time to Quit

notes : ini postingan paling panjang, dalam English pula ๐Ÿ˜€ Lagi ramai dibahas di milis Jurnalisme yang saya ikuti.ย 


article By Carmen Joy King, Adbusters

October 13, 2008ย  http://www.alternet.org/story/102684/

In march, at the peak of Facebook popularity, I quit. with four swiftย  clicks of the mouse, I canceled my account. Gone was the entire onlineย  persona I had created for myself — profile pictures, interests and
activities, work history, friends acquired — all carefully thought out to showcase to the world the very best version of me, all now deleted.

Ironically, the decision to destroy my carefully built-up virtual image came as a result of wanting to enhance my profile. All that particular week I’d been hungry for new quotes on my page, something
to reflect the week I’d been having: something introspective. I perused a quotes website and found this one attributed to Aristotle:

“We are what we repeatedly do.”

I became despondent. What, then, was I? If my time was spent changing my profile picture on Facebook, thinking of a clever status update for Facebook, checking my profile again to see if anyone had commented on my page, Is this what I am? A person who re-visits her own thoughts and images for hours each day ? And so what do I amount to ? An egotist ?
A voyeur?

Whatever the label, I was unhappy and feeling empty. The amount of time I spent on Facebook had pushed me into an existential crisis. It wasn’t the time-wasting, per se, that bothered me. It was the nature
of the obsession — namely self-obsession. Enough was enough. I left Facebook.

In the past, my feelings toward Facebook and similar social networking sites had swung between a genuine sense of connection and community to the uncomfortable awareness that what all of our blogs, online
journals and personal profiles really amounted to was serious narcissism. As my feelings of over-exposure continued to mount, the obvious solution would have been to set limits on my Facebook time —
yet I still found myself sucked in for longer periods every time I visited. In part, it was the hundreds of little links to and hints about other people’s lives that kept me coming back. But even more addicting were the never-ending possibilities to introduce, enhance and reveal more of myself.

The baby-boomers were at one time thought to be the most self-absorbed generation in American history and carried the label of the Me Generation. In recent years this title has been appropriated, twisted
and reassigned to the babies of those same boomers — born in the 80s and 90s — now called Generation Me or the Look at Me Generation.
Author Jean Twenge, an Associate Professor of Psychology at San Diego State University and herself a member of Generation Me — spent ten years doing research on this group’s sense of entitlement and
self-absorption. She attributed it to the radical individualism that was engendered by baby-boomer parents and educators focused on instilling self-esteem in children beginning in the 1970s. American
and Canadian youth were raised on aphorisms such as “express yourself”
and “just be yourself.”

To further illustrate her point, Twenge also found a large increase in self-reference words like “I,” “me,” “mine” and “myself” in news stories published in the 80s and 90s. These words replaced collective
words such as “we,” “us,” “humanity,” “country” or “crowd” found in the stories of a similar nature in the 50s and 60s. This generation might be the least thoughtful, community-oriented and conscientious
one in North American history.

In the end, what does all this online, arms-length self-promotion ultimately provide? Perhaps it’s merely one component of the pursuit to alleviate some of the blackness encountered in the existential vacuum of modern life. As Schopenhauer once projected, modern humans may be doomed to eternally vacillate between distress and boredom. For the vast majority of people experiencing the fragmented, fast-paced
modern world of 2008, a Sunday pause at the end of a hectic week may cause them to become all too aware of the lack of content in their lives. So we update our online profiles and tell ourselves that we are
reaching out.

And yet, the time we waste on Facebook only makes our search for comfort and community more elusive. Online networking sites are marketed as facilitators of community-orientation but when I think
about the millions of people — myself included — who spend large portions of their waking lives feeding off an exchange of thousands of computerized, fragmented images, it doesn’t add up to community-engagement. These images have no meaning beyond “I lookย  pretty from this angle” or “I’m wasted” or “look who my new boyfriend is.” And as we continue to chase even harder — accessing Facebook at work, uploading images from our cell phones — we spend our money on constantly upgraded electronic gadgets marketed to our tendency to self-obsess and present particularly uninteresting and repetitive
images of ourselves. There’s got to be more than this.

And so I quit

After I left Facebook, I wondered what all my friends, family and acquaintances were going to think when they noticed I’d disappeared off the Facebook earth. So some of my Facebook narcissism — am I
being noticed, am I being missed — remains. But I’m also asking myself some new questions. How do I find balance between my online life and my “real” life ? How much exposure is healthy? How do I act
responsibly for myself and engage with those I love? These are still “me” thoughts but they feel different than before. As I sit here, keyboard under palm, eyes on screen, I try to remind myself that my
hands and eyes need to venture out into the community and look and touch the truly tangible that lies just beyond that other big screen: my window.

ยฉ 2008 Adbusters All rights reserved.
View this story online at: http://www.alternet.org/story/102684/


Saya sendiri belum memutuskan untuk berhenti bermain Facebook, tidak seperti Plurk, yang meski accountnya masih hidup, tapi sudah tidak saya sambangi lagi, karena udah ngerasain karma 60 dan tampilannya ngebosenin. Begitu juga dengan Friendster,ย Myspace dan Twitter, yang mati segan hidup tak mau ๐Ÿ˜€

Meski masih rajin liat FB, tapi belum kecanduan seperti mommy3kids yang cantik dan langsing ini (Sorry honey :D). FB memang menyenangkan karena kita bisa bertemu dengan teman-teman jadul di kala SD, SMP, SMA, kuliah, bahkan mantan pacar…kekekekekekekekkkkk ๐Ÿ˜€

Bisa bergosip mengenang masa lalu, malah bikin acara reuni atau ketemuan dadakan. Tapi buat saya, ngeblog, Goodreads, masih lebih nendang daripada yang lain-lainnya.

By Indah Julianti Sibarani

Fulltime mom Penulis Cerita Bacaan Anak Blogger Co Founder Kumpulan Emak Blogger (KEB)


  1. aiih saya terlambat baca postingan ini say , bagus banget nyesel nggak baca sebelumnya ..

    saya memang lebih suka ngeblog , secara di sini lebih mendapatkan balance , soal facebook , kok aku malah kemarin baru bikin account , nggak aktif sih sekedar nyari jejak temen2 yg mungkin berkeliaran , dr dulu pengen bikin account tp kok lama mikirnya buat apa gitu ( telaaat banget yah )

  2. Facebook apaan ya??

    *o’on mode : on*

    Kalo fs emang rada ngebosenin, tapi asyik koq bisa ketemu temen2 lama. Cuman jangan sampe kecanduan aja..
    Btw, lam kenal yak..

  3. Hhhmmm …
    Aku ndak bisa Mesbuk di kantor …(baca membuka Facebook …)

    So aku ndak tau kayak apa itu facebook …

    Mmmm tapi aku pikir Blog, facebook, FS dsb itu bukan Narcist … itu … self actualization … (hehehe)(ngeles halus)

  4. Blog juga bisa dianggap ajang narsis kan?
    Bisa pamer-pamer photo..
    Bisa pamer-pamer kecanggihan tulisan…
    Bisa pamer-pamer kemarin kita abis ngapain dan sama siapa…

    Orang berasumsi adalah hal yang biasa. Sah-sah saja.
    Yang penting, kenarsisan kita nggak merugikan orang lain. Toh, waktu yang terbuang adalah waktu kita sendiri kan? Kalau kita merugikan diri sendiri, well… I think, we have to stop doing it…

    Saya punya Facebook. Punya FS. Punya Plurk (walaupun udah menjelang kematian! haha). Punya blog ๐Ÿ˜€
    Saya dibilang narsis?

  5. fiuh… mungkin itu orang masih belom tau enaknya maen game di pesbuk kali ya??
    kan pesbuk bukan cuman untuk narsis2an, tapi untuk maen game penghilang kejenuhan sekalian beradu tinggi2an skor sama temen2 di dunia maya ๐Ÿ˜€
    hehehe…. sama aja egoist ya?? tapi yang penting asek kok… ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. hehe saya gak punya banyak comment, karena saya gak punya account facebook atau friendster, katanya isinya orang2 narsist, tapi kalo facebook kayaknya lebih intelek ya daripada friendster

  7. FBnya Meity belakangan ini banyak di add ama ponakan-ponakan (yang ternyata pada narsis akut), kak. Duuuh … yang tadinya buka acct di FB cuma kepengen tau aja, sekarang malah jadi media komunikasi bukan hanya buat temen-temen, tapi buat sodara-sodara juga.

    Kalo FS, udah jarang dibuka. Soalnya isinya juga engga terlalu menarik.

  8. Pingback: Buku Muka… « yessymuchtar
  9. postingannya memang panjang bener, mbak juli, hehehe, pakai bahasa linggis lagi, hiks.btw, saya suka membangun komunitas lewat media maya semacam fb atau fs, mbak, sayangnya kadang2 males mbukanya, sampai2 lupa username dan passwordnya, hiks.

  10. hahah…facebook itu emang happening banget ya ๐Ÿ˜›


    sebagai narsis sejati huahuahua mengaku!!

    aku juga kurang ngerti pertemanan fs dan fb

    kadang sesama temen aja bilang ini
    “Eh lo add fb gue donn”

    La..kan kita udah temenan di dunia nyata?? gimana sii!?!

    emang lebih asik ngeblog dehh kekekke

  11. Duh, sori komen lagi – tadi mampir mau tanya2 ‘pa kabar, Mbak Indah?’ gitu… Eh, ternyata ga ada message board :p…

    How are your beautiful angels? Udah gadis2 ya sekarang? Dah lama gak liat foto2nya.. Nantilah aku ngintip FB, sapa tau ada Lily & Kayla di sana ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. Trus, hati2 juga bila berteman sama boss, mertua atawa ipar soalnya whatever you’re doing and you feel like updating through FB they will be able to see it. Some people get sacked from their work because get busted on FB! ๐Ÿ™‚

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