A Year Of Living Peacefully…
Daniel James Gullo
Last year in March, my wife and I made the decision to suspend our Facebook accounts. I had a few very negative experiences, participating in discussions with “fringe friends” and their “fringe friends” about a controversial topics. And, while I totally respect all viewpoints (especially those which are open-minded, tending toward problem solving, consensus building, and conciliative in nature) this same courtesy was not returned to me.
Last year in March, my wife and I made the decision to suspend our Facebook accounts.
I had a few very negative experiences, participating in discussions with “fringe friends” and their “fringe friends” about a controversial topics. And, while I totally respect all viewpoints (especially those which are open-minded, tending toward problem solving, consensus building, and conciliative in nature) this same courtesy was not returned to me.
In fact, what I experienced was rudeness and spite; mocking, cyber-bullying, etc. I was actually quite shocked to see people who I thought were tolerant being the exact opposite.
It caused me to take serious stock of what value I was really getting out of Facebook.
I calculated the time I was spending on Facebook:
About 5 mins / hour, 18 hours / day, 7 days / week, 365 days / year…
That’s about 1.5 hours / day. Or 22 straight days / year in total; or, about 68 work days (8 hours / day). Wow. That’s a colossal waste of time.
How often have I said “I wish I had time to…”
Learn Chinese, refresh my knowledge of German, French, Italian, Japanese, practice piano, violin, get back into hunter-jumpers, write books, do volunteer work, study the Bible, pray, spend time with my wife and kids…
Seeing how much time I was spending on an activity that actually left me feeling WORSE about myself made it an easy decision to walk away.
AND, it’s been very peaceful this past year.
In spite of my attempts to stay in touch, some people just don’t bother to return Emails or call or text. I have missed connecting with my FBFs. That has left me a little sad, but it’s fine.
One thing I have realized, is that not all “time spent” is created equal.
If I am in the back of a taxi on a 15 minute ride from the airport to a hotel, I can’t really do much studying of Chinese. I am not going to whip out my laptop or other device and bang-out 3-4 pages in my book; at least not in a meaningful, thoughtful way. (I won’t even bring up other activities that we tend to engage in whilst seated, which is prime FB time…)
SO, the argument about regaining wasted time and being more productive is inherently flawed.
One thing I have definitely missed out on with FB is doing more with Apple Brook Consulting® (ABC) via FB. I have focused primarily on Twitter and LinkedIn where I have 24k and 7,500 followers respectively. I am a little “old school” in terms of thinking that FB should be for personal communication.
Which means I will be working on giving my company page on FB its due attention.
Overall, I was also a little upset with the ad policies of FB, to be honest. I tried to post a few ads with the Scrum Alliance logos for certifications and FB kicked them back saying that the images had “too much text content in the picture”.
C’mon folks. It’s an official logo which I have the license to utilize…
At first, I thought the policy was SUPER lame because the SA logos are what they are. I decided to protest and not use their ad services; especially since they pulled my ads and charged me anyway…
All FB thievery aside… NOW, I am wondering where these algorithms are that detect text in pictures when it comes to LinkedIn??? The idiots who post math problems and all other manner of brainteaser SPAM on LinkedIn are running completely rampant and unchecked.
Maybe this isn’t such a bad policy after all…
In the end, I have decided to come back to FB and just see how it goes. No rules. No policies. My primary focus will be to invest more time on my business presence on FB.
I will also spend some time catching up with folks there again. My only request is that we keep the conversations respectful, light-hearted, honest. If we can’t get past certain differences, let’s just not be “friends”.
But I hope we can be…
Wishing you all most sincere blessings and peace for this coming month, as we head into Easter.
Daniel has been a well-known and highly regarded servant of the Agile community for many years. His tireless dedication and effort has earned him the distinction of The Most Valuable Agile Professional award for 2015.
As founder and principal of Apple Brook Consulting®, he has first hand experience about what it takes to make business work. A lifelong entrepreneur, Daniel’s portfolio of clients is long and distinguished: ING Direct (CapitalOne), NAVTEQ, IRS, PayPal, ADP, US Postal Service, GM, US Treasury Department, T. Rowe Price, GE, and many other high-profile organizations.
He is the founder of and chief advisor to Agile Delaware and a frequent reviewer, volunteer, and speaker for the Scrum Alliance, Agile Alliance, PMI and other organizations. His experience includes delivering keynote addresses for conferences such as Scrum Gathering – India; Scrum Gathering – Rio; Scrum Gathering – China; et al.