With all the recent changes to Facebook and this week’s revelation about tracking cookies, people are quite justifiably making noises about leaving the leading social network, especially given that there is now a viable alternative in the form of Google+. However, Christina Warren at Mashable argues that due to the breadth and depth at which Facebook has rooted itself in our everyday usage of the internet and mobile communications, leaving would be more of an exile than an exodus.
If you really are freaked out by the apparent ease with which someone can keep track of what you’re doing, where you are doing it, and who you are doing it with, then you do have the facility to fine tune who can see what on your profile, or even just disable the new sharing settings altogether. Although I haven’t tried it myself, I’m sure it wouldn’t be too difficult to strip down your profile to the point where even your friends only see what they already know – your name and your face. The rest you could make completely private so that no one else sees your photos and videos etc. In effect, you’d literally be using Facebook as a crude means of communicating with your friends, and as a place for storing rather than sharing your content. It might defeat the point of being a member, but at least you’ll still be able to see what your friends are happy to share.
But say you did want to leave Facebook – what next? Well presumably the reason for leaving would be one of privacy. Sure, you’d be negating the risk of other people seeing what your daily activity is, and I’d imagine it would be quite nice to be ‘off the grid’ for a while – after all, we were surviving without any difficulty before the likes of MySpace, BeBo and Facebook arrived. But surely the reason you joined in the first place was to have somewhere to share and view photos, voice your opinions and have your friends chip in with their 2 cents as well.
If you did want to leave, then make sure you clear your desk before you do so and take all your personal effects with you on your way out. SocialSafe gives you the chance to back up all of your Facebook content and keep it for you on your own PC or Mac in an offline journal. All of your profile information, photos, wall posts, updates and friend list, along with any tags and comments linked to these items is available for you to view, browse and search through in the journal. So if the online pitfalls of Facebook are becoming too much for you to bear, there is another way to retain the memories you have created while using the social network. You don’t have to be leaving Facebook to use SocialSafe, and we’d recommend to everyone that scheduling automatic backups of your content is a great way to make sure you don’t lose anything should the worst happen.