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Why I’m less active on social media these days

You may have noticed that I’m less active on social media these days. I maintain my Facebook page, I reply to tweets, I send articles to those who request them on ResearchGate, and I reply messages on LinkedIn – that’s about it. I post the odd comment here and there, and that’s about it.

There are a number of reasons why I’m doing this. First of all, I was inspired by Digital Minimalism (by Cal Newport) to reduce my use of social media. I couldn’t do a full 30 day ban, since within a day of deactivating my account, my family went in crisis because they thought I had blocked them. So I reactivated my account and cleaned out my likes and friend list, and started ruthlessly marking the type of posts I don’t want to see in my feed.

Another reason is that I am so very busy – still catching up from the full lockdown, still with limited childcare (which is better than nothing), and with a heavy teaching load. I just don’t have time to scroll if I want to get any sleep.

The main reason, however, is that I am tired of politics. I’m tired of people just shouting into cyberspace.
Don’t get me wrong – I love politics. I love a good debate. I love learning about points of view and arguments pro and con. However, there is virtually no room for debate on social media. Politics on the internet just looks like soldier sitting in trenches and firing away aimlessly. The content gets extremer all the day, the insults fly around without any politesse or considerations for the other, and it’s easy to get carried away. I’m done – I’d rather go and read a good book or- if I can lay my hands on it- a good magazine or newspaper (hard to find in Ecuador, since the quality of press is very poor).

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