Before this week’s blog, I had to experience 24 full-hour without using any social media websites. It was not that challenging to me, to be honest, because among all the social media websites, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, Tumblr, I only have an active Facebook account. When I just opened my Facebook account five years ago, I used to check my Facebook twice or three times a day to see the updates from my friends. However, I feel my passion for Facebook has faded away. With the growing number of friends or acquaintances, to be exact, I am tired of watching what is going on with them. It’s too much information for me! So, I decided to ignore “the problem of dealing with the enormous amounts of information available” to me. (Converging Media, 179) I check Facebook less than four times a week now.
I have Twitter and Google+ account but I barely use them. One reason is that I don’t have a habit of regularly checking those accounts. The other reason is since social media could easily expose us in ways we can not control, I do not want to put so much personal information on social media and win everybody’s attention. As the reading stated, “the number and variety of relationships in which we are engaged, potential frequency of contact, expressed intensity of relationship and endurance through time” puts us in a state of social saturation. I do not enjoy being saturated in social media. I tried to get involved in it in the smallest way possible even though I might miss many hits from social media followers and be considered “outdated” by my friends.
However, I feel I cannot live without instant messengers. Two instant messengers that I use daily are QQ and Skype. QQ is an instant messaging software service created by a company called Tencent. It is very popular instant software among Chinese-speaking people. My communication with my friends and my family heavily relies on QQ and Skype because as long as any devices are connected to the Internet, I can use them to chat, view and leave messages to my friends. Since most of friends use QQ, and I use school Internet all the time, it is more convenient and cheap to use instant messengers than text messages. In addition, I use Skype to video chat or call my parents overseas. I leave my QQ on as soon as I connect to the Internet. Luckily, this assignment does not count instant messenger as social media, otherwise I would have had more trouble with this period of social media abstinence.
My 24-hour period without social media did not make me crave them. In fact, I enjoyed staying away from it instead of saturating myself in social media. My communication mostly relies on instant messengers but not on social media websites. I still like social media websites, but I do not like being saturated by them!