I have been growing more and more disenchanted with the online media mogul over the past several years. It feels like we've become a commodity to the company, buying and selling our data thru posts and advertisements. I just want to share pics of our family outings so that my 93-yr old grandma can keep tags on us (hi Grandma! Hope you are well!)
During the Covid Quarantine, one of the movies we watched was the "Social Dilemma". The documentary focused on more than just FB, covering all of the social media platforms. But since FB and Instagram are my two primary SM platforms, I was really only zeroed in on the way that FB treats it's members -- the need and desire to get likes and random rabbit trails thrown at the users to keep them captive in the software.
After watching the documentary, I removed FB from my phone. IT FELT GREAT! I actually felt free of the pressure to go and post and check on my likes. Occasionally I would check in on my account via my iPad...but only occasionally. I'd still post pictures and updates for my grandma (hello again...I heard you got your vaccine shot -- yay!)
Everything changed on Friday, January 15th, 2021.
Earlier in the week I had received an email from Norton's that my info was being sold on the dark web. TBH, I didn't give it much credence. The email account was my "junk" account, and all of my old passwords had been updated. My email/password being sold on the dark web is a result of either the Target or US Fed. Govt data breach several years ago. So I wasn't too concerned. Then, on Friday morning, I woke up to find 3 messages from FB that: 1.) my account was being accessed by someone in Hollywood, CA; 2.) here is the 6-digit security code that I requested; 3.) everything has been changed and updated and I was now protected with 2-step verification.
Problem: I didn't do any of this. And it all happened at 4:30am my time, when I was asleep.
And here's why FB sucks: they do not have any HUMAN BEING available to help with compromised accounts. It's all on-line bots. You enter info, and they send you an automated response. You try a different way, and they send you a different automated response. Sure, if your account has been compromised, they reassure you that they can help you restore your account. But here's the rub: you have to enter your valid email associated with the account. Guess what? This toolbag in CA changed the email account, so the online FB support kept telling me that "my email was not the correct email address associated with the account." I tried and tried to fix this, and they kept sending the bot-generated email stating, "we've sent you a code to verify your account." And they kept sending it to Mr. Toolbag in CA. Not the email that had been associated with the account for the past 15 years??
BTW - there is not one single phone # to call. I found a few support emails, but 2 of them bounced back because of full email boxes, and the other 2 were delivered into cyberspace, presumably ignored, lost, or deleted.
So now what? There is an imposter out there with my FB account, and I can do nothing?
I had one more hail mary. FB lets you report an account being used by an imposter. So I did so. Had to send them my drivers ID and passport photo. Seems safe, right? Anyways, after a few days of dealing with this, my wife let me know that my account had been removed. Yay! Progress, right? Wrong. FB's way of dealing with the fraudulent activity was to completely remove my account. Problem solved...for them.
I signed up for FB in 2005. I had been a long time poster. In fact, the whole reason that this turd-bucket hacker in CA was able to hack into my account is because I was using the original email, original password that I had used to sign up back on day 1.
So there it is. Rather than contacting the REAL Aaron Zimmer to reconcile the fraud, FB simply deleted 15 years of my online use and wiped the problem clean.
Facebook sucks. They obviously do NOT care about the individual users past their ability to be bought and sold as a commodity. And so I'm done.
So why the rant? Well, I do miss posting stuff online for my family and friends to enjoy (hi grandma, hi mom, hi Peggy, hi Marilyn!) Also, I use the messenger app a TON to communicate with friends in foreign countries. Since that's tied to FB, I've lost that ability too.
I've been giving this a lot of thought. I don't want to be a commodity item for FB anymore. But I miss having the online connection with my friends and family members. So I've decided the following course of action.
1. I will get a new FB account. If you are reading this blog, it's because it will be my primary posting on FB. I will post pictures here, and updates about our lives. And direct my FB traffic to this neutral blogspot that I will work on updating regularly. Ad-free!
2. I will get a new messenger account. Feel free to write me there, or to reach out for my cell #. The phone is always within reach, and that's a WAY better way to reach me.
3. While I may post occasionally on FB, I am done with them. No mas, amigos.
4. You can always catch me lounging in the hammock or fiddling with the Airstream -- and now I've got more time to do both!
Feel free to post any comments you like on this blog. This is a safe environment, and I will be reading any comments you share.