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Moving away from Facebook and Instagram

I’m coming off Instagram and Facebook again and attempting to migrate away from Whatsapp, so I’d love for you all to continue following me here on the blog where I will continue to share my art work.

If you are journaling along with my mushroom moon designs page a day challenge over on Instagram then never fear, this will be migrating over to the blog too!

If you’d like to know why I’ve decided to come off Instagram and Facebook again then read on, if not thanks for reading and I hope to see you here again soon!

I have had a tough time with social media over the years, deleting and adding and deleting accounts again.

Facebook and Instagram have been a great way to connect with friends, family and customers which makes them very difficult to get rid of (and don’t even get me started on Whatsapp!)

But I know that the reason I keep deleting these apps is because Facebook (who owns Instagram, Facebook and Whatsapp just for clarification) doesn’t align with my own values. This paragraph from an excerpt from the New Yorker pretty much sums it up;

Facebook makes millions of its users more angry, more confused, and more psychologically frail; that comments discouraging vaccination against covid-19 are “rampant” on the platform, and that efforts to flag them for review are “bad in English, and basically non-existent elsewhere”; that a non-trivial proportion of suicidal teen-agers “traced the desire to kill themselves to Instagram”; that it’s against Facebook’s rules to post revenge porn, but that when you’re a star they let you do it—that, in other words, Facebook is just as toxic as we thought, and that the company’s top executives know this but seem to treat it as little more than a P.R. problem. 

https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/the-moral-bankruptcy-of-facebook

It turns out that Facebook, who owns Instagram, is very aware of the negative mental health effects Instagram in particular has on all people, but disproportionately on teenage girls.

A September 2021 Guardian newspaper article states:

Facebook has kept internal research secret for two years that suggests its Instagram app makes body image issues worse for teenage girls, according to a leak from the tech firm.

“Since at least 2019, staff at the company have been studying the impact of their product on its younger users’ states of mind. Their research has repeatedly found it is harmful for a large proportion, and particularly teenage girls.

“We make body image issues worse for one in three teen girls,” said a slide from one internal presentation in 2019, seen by the Wall Street Journal. “Thirty-two per cent of teen girls said that when they felt bad about their bodies, Instagram made them feel worse,” a subsequent presentation reported in March 2020.

Another slide said: “Teens blame Instagram for increases in the rate of anxiety and depression. This reaction was unprompted and consistent across all groups.”

And so, I have decided once again to stop using Instagram. This is for my own mental health, which I promised myself I would prioritise over all other things this year, and to align with my own value system.

This is a pain in some ways because Instagram, like many other methods of social media, is a great way to promote yourself as an artist. And as a mentioned before, pretty much everyone I know uses WhatsApp as there main messaging platform. But it’s not worth sacrificing my mental health for.

Currently I am attempting to switch over from Whatsapp to a more ethically viable messaging platform called SIGNAL which has pretty much all the capabilities of Whatsapp without the data stealing and the Evil Facebook overlords destroying the mental health of millions in the background.

Anyway, If you’ve got this far thanks for reading and sticking with it! I hope this goes a little way to explain why I am removing myself from Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp.

I hope to see you more regularly over here on my blog!

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