I think it’s safe to think that we all have a “love-hate” relationship with Facebook. I, for one, was a skeptic when I first signed up for an account some years back. And even then, I probably had my “inactive” profile for a year or so before I actually did anything with it. And now, as the original users have long since abandoned the world of FB, and the likes of our parentals now rabidly active on the network, I struggle with whether or not I should give it all up, too.
On the one hand, it’s a great tool to keep in touch with people. And while picking up a phone always has more meaning, the truth is we have evolved into a digital society. Platforms like FB make it simpler to see what your friends or family members are up to. For me, especially, it makes it easy to touch base with family outside the country.
But aside from that, I could easily continue my life without it. If FB were to go under tomorrow, I could totally survive; I think we all can. I mean we all survived Friendster, and many of us got over Myspace once that platform became annoying.com. What more if we all had to give up FB? Might we be a happier people without it? Just, a Dutch creative agency, is looking to figure out exactly that through their “99 Days of Freedom” experiment.
99 Days of Freedom asks participants to set their profile pic to a “time-off” image, and then urges them to spend 99 consecutive days away from the network. And as they are “away,” they are tasked with recording their mood after 33 days, again after 66 days, and then finally after the 99 days are over. Essentially, the experiment aims to help participants find better use of their time, and hopefully boost happiness levels.