Phạm Đức Huy

What I did on Facebook for the last 2 years

On the distracting effects of News Feed and how to minimize exposure.

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Posted on January 13, 2019

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If you feel, life was much simpler and more care free back then, you are not alone.
Human still just entered the Information era, and the long term effects of information overload are just kicking in for this generation.
Back in 2017, I started an experiment with my Facebook account.
I made a rule that I could read my own posts, notifications & messages to respond whenever needed, but NOT the News Feed.
It was out of my realization, that I can 'quit' social media, when still maintain connections. I did not expect any immediate result, other than more free time.
A year later, 2018 became when I made the most progress ever in my lifetime. For a more detailed post about my discoveries, visit this post.


News feed was released in 2006. Before that, people visited others' profiles to update. A decade later, through extensive refines, it has become one of Facebook's main features. Professionally designed from ground up like a slot machine, the feed is destined to keep you addicted. You spend more time, you see more ads, and you give more personal data.
I basically returned to the life before News Feed existed. For the ones I really care about, I go directly to their profiles from time to time, pay appreciation for their implicit choice of cover photo, and occasionally text/call them. I seriously hope you read this post on my profile, because you simply like me that much and actually sometimes visit my personal representative digital space.

Heck, who am I kidding?

Of course you didn't. Because News Feed was a brilliant invention to help you know everything about everyone at once, at a flick of a finger. I swear I thought it was the best thing that ever happened to my file back in 2010 when I started using. Never got left behind again, because now I could jump to the middle of any conversation! Never lose any friend again just because we go to different school. And there are so many ways to express myself that my introverted nature fails to accommodate.
But I was not aware of all the negative effects. You can read all about them online. I don't really need to recite again here.
One simple experiment that ended up becoming a rule for me to live by. DO NOT touch the News feed of any social sites. You may have your own insane productivity boost like I did. And hey look, I still have time to write you posts like these xD. High quality, helpful, and reflective, are my main tenets.

In all, I encourage you to try what I did.

You don't need to quit Facebook. Keep all your friends and family safe within touch. (hehe) But stop using the News feed.
If you are using Google Chrome, try this extension: News Feed Eradicator
It sorts of blocks out the feed, so even if you click on it out of a habit, you still wont see anything.

Written by Human, Not by AI
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