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  1. You raise great points, and I love your humor! Facebook falls when something else rises, and it very well may be Pokemon Go. I left Facebook, and haven’t looked back. As with all things, time will tell. 🙂

  2. I was just pondering a blog piece on this very topic. After reading your insightful article, I have little more to add. Well done. However, I do hope you are incorrect in regard to Pokémon Go.

  3. Kristen for the first time ever I’m going to share your post. I don’t want to enter the competition – too scared what you might say 😉 – so I’m not abiding by the rules, but I wholeheartedly agree with almost all of what you say. Although I have been guilty of politicking on FB as some of my friends and I share that, now I am drawing back a lot. I too tend to see trends emerging (I just don’t write about them in such a lively way) and I think you are right. You’ve almost convinced me to try Pokemon Go – I know a friend in her 60s who already has…

    • Abbie Sweany on July 22, 2016 at 10:14 am
    • Reply

    Pigeon playing Chess nails it. I just posted on FB about being kind. Pokemon Go is a nightmare. I do hope it gets hacked again and it lasts a lot longer next time. The Botanic Garden was filled with players. They trampled down plants, pushed children and children pushed children, then it crashed and peace returned to the garden. Gangs set up lures at a local park, apparently, players are easy targets. As far as FB dying, I think FB answer is the “live” videos about anything and nothing, but they are a new voice for the pigeons.

    • debcoonts on July 22, 2016 at 10:17 am
    • Reply

    You are so spot on. Every time I get on FB I feel as if I been thrown back in time to high school–and I went to an all-girl school so you can imagine the drama and the meanness. I don’t want to hear about the horror in people’s lives (we all have it), or what they had for dinner, or how xenophobic, racist, angry, etc. they are. I don’t want to be called names and denigrated. I’m tired of the hate, the plain awfulness–it hurts my heart and makes me worry about the world. No, I don’t want to play with the mean kids anymore.

  4. Ah, Kristen! I agree. I haven’t played Pokemon Go, but I have seen numerous gaggles of people around a coffee house a friend and I frequent. They are all searching for their level ups and whatnot. I have decreased Facebook usage significantly. I tend to my author page, but never post on my personal page. I don’t scroll through the feed. At all. I am totally over it and sick of notifications I didn’t permit such as when every Tom, Dick, and Harry posts a pic or status update. I don’t need to micromanage other people’s lives. I have been really into Instagram instead (more specifically Bookstagram) and I think I have found my tribe. An international community that comes together for a love of books. Occasionally there is a post hidden beneath a great picture with commentary I disagree with, but it is a lot easier to customize your feed on Instagram because unlike Facebook it doesn’t try to intuit what you want (I hate that by the way). So I don’t know if Pokemon Go will do it, but I think Facebook is no longer king.

      • PamAnne Mallory on July 24, 2016 at 3:08 am
      • Reply

      Thank you for mentioning Bookstagram. I had heard of Instagram, of course, but it seemed to be a site for posting pictures. If there is a section especially for people to discuss books, it sounds like somewhere I want to be.

  5. Like you, I have had to block some people who just get livid with their opinions on politics and unfollow some very good friends. This election hysteria and madness has had an impact on my friendships with people I really liked. I can’t go with Pokemon, however, but I am using FB less and less. I would never use Twitter because I can’t select my friends and who I want to communicate with. It seems to be even meaner than Facebook. Good post. I enjoyed it.

  6. I see people using Facebook to share happy pictures, silly pictures, kitty pictures. And now music. Beloved music to cover over the ranting.

  7. It’s been great seeing my 15 and 20 yo sons going out for walks to catch Pokemon! (We’ve gone over a few safety reminders). My 15 yo told me someone posted a video of attaching their cell phone to the ceiling fan (then turning it on) in order to hatch an egg, LOL. Gotta give them points for that, even if it defeats the point of exercise!

    I like Facebook when it’s funny cat memes and videos, or someone is sharing good news. But the politics/religion…ugh. I’ve clicked more “hide” and “unfollow” buttons these past few months than I ever have. Thanks for a thoughtful post!

  8. Once again you have nailed it. Everything you wrote resonates with me. I do agree we are seeing this movement (virtual reality games as social events) in its infancy and there are still many wrinkles to be ironed out. I belong to a group of Little Free Library Stewards. We build and maintain those little book boxes that are popping up like mushrooms around the country. https://littlefreelibrary.org (Another way for people to get outside and meet) Many of the LFL Stewards are experimenting with listing their book boxes as Poke Stops of gyms. Their success has been interesting. Teenagers are flocking to the LFLs at all hours. These are mainly set up at the edge of the stewards property and while numbers of visitors are increasing so is damage to lawns, flowers etc. It is a great social experiment. 🙂 As far as nastiness on Facebook, I am seeing the same thing. I find I am limiting my time on FB because I can only take so much negativity. I’m a writer and it is a conundrum because every meeting we have with publishers, editors etc. we are asked for our Facebook numbers, Twitter, Instagram, etc. Anyway, thanks for a well thought-out post!

    1. https://suzyparish.org/2016/07/22/is-facebook-dying-whats-killing-it-kristen-lambs-blog/ I posted my comment on my WordPress Blog along with your article. Thanks.

    • lesedgerton on July 22, 2016 at 10:28 am
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    Another great post, Kristen! I’m so glad to see someone knowledgeable talk about the direction FB is taking. I’m rarely on it, and less and less. There’s just so much political crap on it by people who call anyone who doesn’t share their views nasty names that there’s very little joy on it or folks just being plain friendly. Plus, I’m not sure how some of my writer friends find time to write as much as I see some of them on it. I think they’re writing as I see books coming out but perhaps they’re not spending as much time editing and rewriting them… I don’t unfollow people who don’t share my political views but I do quit reading their rants… The best way to make unpleasantness go away is to ignore it, perhaps… Anyway, another intelligent post–thank you.

  9. I couldn’t agree with you more, Kristen. Yes, Facebook has gotten horrible.I’ve been trying to avoid it. People are so mean! My favorite form of social medial is blogging. I’ve made great friends and connections, and we’re all nice to each other. 🙂 Great post!

  10. Thanks for sharing your insights Kristen, you hit the nail on the head. I’m pretty tired of the negativity and just plain meanness on social sites such as Facebook. I’d close my account, except for the few people I enjoy staying connected with and seeing their photos, even I don’t post much myself.

  11. My son is at his dad’s this month, and he called just to say he loved me. No, wait. He called just to ask if he could download Pokemon Go on his phone. I’m looking forward to him coming home, not just because I miss my son, but I think it’ll be fun to play the game with him. He’ll be 12 in five days, and this’ll probably be the last year he wants to do anything with Mom.

    1. My son is 14 and he LOVES to go out hunting Pokemon with me. Before this, if I had errands to run, he’d beg to stay home. Now he sits in the passenger seat with my phone and looks for stops and Pokemon. He actually gets out of the house, too, taking my phone on long walks (our data is only set to use for the game so he can’t get online outside of the house, so I don’t worry about him doing anything else out there), which means he’s not watching stupid YouTube videos or playing computer games. Maybe your son will keep playing if it lasts that long.

      1. Yay! That’s very hopeful.

  12. Kristen,
    Great blog post. As always you leave me with lots to think about. I think FB will fall. For me it’s a gut feeling, the kind I get when I walk into a Klingon Tupperware party. Too much ranting. Too much boasting. Too much immaturity.
    Guess I need to try Pokemon.
    I’m rebloggung too.
    Best Wishes,
    Jo-Ann Carson
    Smart, sexy suspense

  13. Reblogged this on Jo-Ann Carson.

  14. You raise some interesting points. I know that I’m not on FB nearly as much as I used to be, mostly because FB’s algorithms have decided I don’t need to see most of my friends’ posts anymore. The social aspect that drew me to FB in the first place has been greatly diminished and it’s not nearly as much fun as it used to be. Seems like it’s become more of a tool for business than a social gathering. As a result, I usually just pop on to check notifications and then I’m off to do something else. On the plus side, I’m getting more time back for reading and writing! But I do kind of miss hanging out with the friends I had lost touch with for so long and then found on FB. Great post, Kristen. Thanks.

    • Bethanyk on July 22, 2016 at 10:38 am
    • Reply

    Super super super post!!!!!

  15. The vitriol is why I’m largely absent from social media. My concern with Pokemon is the speed at which it’s been adopted and Nintendo’s inability to keep up with server demand. People consume content much faster than producers can create it. As writers, we recognize this every day we have a fan asking when our next book is coming out — generally two days after we just released one 😉

    Phenomenon like this that flare up and burn so brightly so quickly, often fade out just as fast. I hope Nintendo can keep people interested with new features, or that someone else can come up with something equally as engaging, but I’m about as optimistic about that as I am that all the politicians will suddenly have epiphanies and actually start working for the people again :/

    1. I don’t know if Nintendo will have to. Usually the first iteration of something isn’t what stays around. Lost of horseless carriages were invented before Henry Ford. He simply perfected the idea with the assembly line and Model T combo. I just think that Pokemon Go is a harbinger of what is ahead.

      1. I hope so. I long for the day when social media has more social and less media. 🙂 Happy Friday to you!

  16. Great post! I was just mentally composing my message for Facebook saying why I am opting out of it until after the elections!! I agree with all your objections to FB, but I add that for some reason, fewer and fewer items of interest pop up on fb for me. I don’t know if it has to do with the automated messages just missing the mark, but I used to enjoy the discovery aspect of FB and now days go by I see nothing interesting or new to me. I don’t know about PokemonGo taking its place but I think its sudden success shows that people are longing for something different!

  17. All things like FB and Twitter cycle through. I started on FB because my kids would only post pictures and news of the grandkids there. Now that the grandkids are teens, the teens aren’t using FB so I don’t log into FB as much. And I knew FB was starting to die when the number of automated posts started and really saw it when the started reposting my pictures from five years ago.

    And I never understood twitter or as I’ve called it, “Short attention span theater.”

      • Loretta on July 22, 2016 at 10:47 am
      • Reply

      Laughing, love the “short attention span theater.” 🙂 True. 🙂

  18. As usual, great insight and nicely presented. I’m not sure I will survive this political season on FB, but I will keep reading your blog posts. Hugs . . .

    • frank4man on July 22, 2016 at 10:42 am
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    Oh noooooo! Not MORE CHANGE!

    • Loretta on July 22, 2016 at 10:46 am
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    I have practiced what you’re preaching regarding facebook, ever since I created a page. I treat it like I would my home. You’re very welcome to come, stay as long as you wish, laugh, play, be kind…but when someone enters and tries to start any form of word battle, I step in. I usually delete the comment, and depending on the closeness to the person, or the sharpness of the comment, leave them a private message letting them know that I do not participate in political, religious or inflammatory topics. If they don’t adhere, then I delete them.
    I’ve been fortunate in having very few of these incidents, and other than one time, had the situation resolve.
    My page is mine. And I try to be a good hostess, but one that won’t allow the whole party to be ruined by one rude person. 🙂
    I loved this, and I’m going to share it.
    Then, I’m going to pay very close attention to what you said about the future. I do agree with you, using FB primarily for marketing, is not the best choice. What is, I’m not sure.

  19. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Sooo tired of Facebook. Maybe it’s because it’s election time (again), but I almost dread going on there lately. Oh, and as far as their marketing? I have NEVER purchased anything through one of their links. I don’t go there to shop.

    And Pokemon Go? Never played it, and since I live in a rural area, probably not much to chase anyway. But I’m all for anything that gets people out of the house!

  20. Hmm…. How to capitalize? How about, for every book you buy, you get a code that has a one in four chance of winning a free Pokémon, and a one in twenty chance for a rare? 🙂

  21. I am staying off Facebook for all the reasons you say. I do play Pokemon Go because it gets me exercising, at least moderately, and I have already chatted with people I would rarely chat with otherwise and NOT ONE of them has said anything nasty about my values, religious beliefs, or choice of the food I feed my family! Lots more fun than being told my thyroid doctor doesn’t know anything about my thyroid cancer or that my inherited kidney condition can probably be cured by a Wrap, herbs, some stupid protein shake, or just meditating!!!

  22. I have been spending less and less time on Facebook. It just doesn’t seem important any more. No one sees my posts and I am sick of arguing with people.

    • Bill H on July 22, 2016 at 10:56 am
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    I don’t use twitter even though I have had an account for a couple of years. I do have a facebook account and will view it a couple of times a week. I know as an unpublished author I need to step up my game but whenever I pull them up writer’s block pops up. I mean really, what would I post?

    I too have noticed all my friends on facebook either post memes, what they are doing or where they went. Some even can’t help themselves from posting about religion or politics. Just a screaming hate machine….

    So really…how can I engage myself to do this? Any ideas?

    1. I will post on that Monday likely :). I got you!

        • Bill H on July 22, 2016 at 12:00 pm
        • Reply

        You rock…:)

  23. Another wonderful post. I was beginning to think I was the only one still on social media to be social. At this point, I no longer care if FB dies – it has been committing slow suicide for months if not years. Twitter is rapidly becoming toxic as well. I find myself avoiding Twitter friends that have helped me through some extremely difficult times because of their foaming-at-the mouth political rants. I don’t know what the answer is, but something needs to change.

  24. Another great post! I don’t know about the Pokemon Go, and probably won’t try it out at this point in time. I’m pretty sick of social media for ALL the reasons you stated. I’m not much for playing games…I like things pretty straight forward…and POLITE. But for now, Facebook seems about the best way to market my self-published books outside of my small town. I’m hanging on for now, but could let go at any moment! Thanks for your insight…and I really think you’re correct! Have a great day! (P.S. I don’t want to be part of the contest…just wanted to comment.)

  25. Thank you for this biog. You’ve captured the problems I’ve been seeing in FB. I haven’t gotten on the Pokemon Go train, and I don’t intend to. Instead, I’m pulling back from social media to focus on my writing. Sometimes, I leave FB so upset at the rants, things people would never say in public face to face, I can’t get my work done. I love the funny things many of my friends put out there, but the rest is getting too venomous. So, for me, I’m unplugging from social media for awhile to regain my sanity. Again, thanks for saying the things I’ve been thinking.

  26. I’ve had it up to here *raises arm above head* with rants and raves on all social media platforms that I’ve almost avoided the whole thing altogether. Between the hate and advertising, I’ve honestly grown a little sick of logging in, no matter what social media site I’ve been on.

    I’ve been doing a lot of my own research about readers, and where they go to find information about new books. Like, do Facebook ads or Twitter ads really convince readers to try a new author or book? (From the responses I’ve gotten, that’s a bit fat NO.) So, now I’m wondering how the “new author” can have a stand out digital platform?

    With the rest of this year destined to not get much better as far as rants on social media go (we have an upcoming election if nothing else), I don’t see how social media is going to win in the “nicest social place to hang out,” anymore. You know?

    So now, what do we do? Where do people go if you don’t want to be slammed with people’s political opinions or have them trying to sell you something? (For the author that can figure this out, don’t forget to purchase a lotto ticket, because I think you are brilliant!) Because for me, it’s isn’t social media. Not anymore.

    1. But Nicole I have been advising authors for years to brand via a blog on THEIR website. Blogs have been around since the 90s. Blogs have not gone away and short of the Internet imploding won’t go away. People will read them when stuck in airports, in line, on a train. It is a short form and people love it. Also, we own the content…not FB. WE control the comments and the tone. We control advertising. We are not at the mercy of the public or a social site losing its mind. And finally, blogs play to an author’s strengths. Writers WRITE.

      And writers cry and wail when I recommend this, but this is why. All the work I put into this blog I get to keep enjoying and will keep growing. All the work I post into FB? Who knows? This is why Rise of the Machines was written with this idea that we not put down deep roots on ANY social site…to give myself a plug there 😉 .

      1. So you feel that blogs will outlast the other failing social media sites? I wonder if there was a way to make blogs more interactive, like the Pokemon Go did? 🙂

        1. Blogs rewriting, pure and simple and around since Man created written language. Of course it will outlast. We don’t stop needing recipes or life advice or writing help just because FB is struggling. I bet there is a way to marry the blogs with Go-Tech and I know that a blogger could easily do vlogs and those COULD be easily integrated with these new games.

          1. I trust your instincts on this – thank you for sharing! I’m excited to see what people come up with for the next thing, you know?

        2. I have been spending more time reading blogs than reading the rants of fb and I feel more connected to people on a positive level after reading their blogs.

          1. Thank you for sharing this! I’m glad to hear that you haven’t been turned off blogs even if other social media is becoming overwhelming. You know?

          2. Blogs make me think and ponder my own life. Social media seems all about pkatforms and anger where bligs are just honest feelings in a less attack mode. I read blogs for hours a day.

  27. I finally “unfollowed” someone who was pissed off and ranting. It took me a long time to get up the nerve. They had 80 or more likes. WHY? I can’t handle the constant spewing of some people. Like you said, It’s so divisive and reminds me of middle school. What’s funny is a lot of these people consider themselves introverts. Ah, the ability to hide behind the computer screen and type without being face to face. It’s so seductive.

    Luckily we can choose what we see in our feeds. Use the unfollow button and they’ll never know!

    LOVE Pokemon Go! Pokemon for business is already huge! It’s where the “gyms” are located. I’m sure they already include bookstores. I’ll check and see the next time I’m on Pearl Street.
    It gets everyone outside and the app introduces you to points of interest. I met a bunch of people in Breckenridge playing the game last weekend. How cool is that?

  28. Ooh, I love this thought! Don’t know what to do with it, except keep paying attention haha, but love it! And I think I could get behind the idea of a D&D Go 🙂

    • Jed Diamond on July 22, 2016 at 11:18 am
    • Reply

    As usual, I find your analysis insightful and helpful. I don’t experience as much negativity on Facebook as you describe, but I definitely feel the need to connect with real people, in real ways, that combine face-to-face with virtual. I haven’t heard of Pokemon Go until now, so will enjoy hearing more about it and the future of the Web. I write non-fiction and enjoy the most to connect with real people, doing real things, learning about love and life.

  29. What a great post! I’ve long said the problem with all forms of social communication on the Internet – from online games to Facebook – is the temptation of anonymity. Your post clarifies the issue with amazing depth. I would add in the issue of shills: the organized legions of various agenda who crash the party with their scripted prods. But that’s just more of the same.

    The problem is really a function of human nature. The simple truth is that without rules, we tend to become barbaric rather quickly. in the digital domain, even when there are rules, they are quickly negated by the fact that a person can clone themselves with an e-mail address and show back up to continue with their poor behavior. Rules, even when enforced, are little more than a coffee break to the truly motivate troll. Hacking in games, soapboxing on facebook, bidding up auctions and not showing up to actually buy anything – it is all symptomatic of the same problem. Behavior sans constraints thereupon becomes chaotic, disruptive and destructive.

    Most of us still mind our manners, but it doesn’t take many to ruin the party. And so the party fizzles. The social Internet will become a post-apocolyptic wasteland of cyber bullies vying for each other and getting – bored. The rest of us can just change the channel.

    Blogs and e-mail are the exceptions. For whatever reason, people don’t send me e-mails ranting about politics (unless they’re actually politicians) and blogs tend to attract civil conversations like this. I wonder why?

    1. But I have been encouraging authors to blog for years and years and years. Blogs are centralized around the personality of the blogger. Get a good blogger who is kind and firm, you won’t have nonsense and readers will gravitate there because they know they will be kept safe. I do get trolls and bullies but I have Zero Tolerance and smite them without thought. This is not a democracy (I.e. FB) it is a pure dictatorship.

      And VERY thoughtful comment and totally agree. Unless someone can enforce the rules it just devolves and we all move on.

  30. I like the idea of the game. I like that it makes people go outside and exercise. However, it creates a few annoyances of its own that will keep me away. Take for instance my niece’s recent birthday party. She turned five, so as you can guess, it was a really happening party for the adults forced to attend. Now I’ve grown to expect a few adults would sneak off to a corner or so while the party progressed to check their phones and various social media feeds, but in this case, my sister (not my niece’s mother) suddenly had to take off because there was a Pokemon nearby. It became very obvious to the rest of us she was gone, victim to some technology siren, as opposed to simply being there but non-present in the moment and a little upsetting to us non-players.

    1. Yeah like I said, it definitely has problems and I don’t know if Go is what will stick, but I do think it is signaling a new evolution in how we digital age folks are going to socialize and Facebook should be concerned.

      1. I don’t know about its long term impact on social media (though you make a pretty compelling argument), but I do believe it is absolutely the beginning of mainstream augmented reality.

  31. What the trolls did to Leslie Jones (Ghostbusters) on Twitter was obnoxious, brutal, atrocious, and vomitoriously disgusting. But it was just another day in the Twitterverse. 🙁

    I soooooo hope you’re right ….. you usually are. 😀

    1. Thus far I have been which in ways sucks because I really loved Facebook. But unfortunately the bullies might have a stronghold and it is a teen—ever self-righteous, persecuted and selfish.

      But I will blog later on what writers can do to keep that virtual platform strong even though people might not be as plugged into major social sites 😀 .

    2. Absolutely disgusting how they treated Leslie Jones. Good thing she is made of sterner stuff. I’m fed up with FB and Twitter for similar reasons.

  32. I feel the same way and have noticed a decline in useful connections on Facebook. You’ve ignited my brain with other ideas. Yeah. This is going to be so cool!

    • Rachel Thompson on July 22, 2016 at 11:51 am
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    What’s interesting about this post to me is seeing we have something in common. We look intently at the human condition. You examine the surface currents, I do that but focus deeper. I’m after the core truths of the human condition, what makes us tick. I’m a nerd too, but I study the social sciences, comparative religions, anthropology, psychology, contextual history and more. Most writers do as well, directly or roundabout. You study pop-culture to glean trends that sell. I go at it a different way. I study to understand why and how people think or don’t think to capture their interests. I chase archetypes, you ride its waves. The end result is the same–understanding is how we writers push the reader’s buttons. You grapple for the readers’ shallow attention while I pick their psyche. I look at and connect deep dots for profound truths and answers but connecting shallow dots sell books. As Voltaire and others have said, the masses are stupid, but I say, no, just shallow. The big picture is grim but the bread and circuses circling the sewer’s drain sure is fun and profitable. The way to plug human extinction’s drain hole is critical thinking but we social herding animals aren’t supposed to do that–that’s the wolves job. We have too many meaningless games to enjoy while profiteers milk the willing masses.

  33. I am a case study of your point. I use Twitter but have no idea how to actually connect with a real person and interact there. I use Facebook on a level somewhere between pointless kitty pics and posting or liking pointed (but usually not political) ideas. I post mainly photographs with some kind of thought attached. But even at the heart of that, I want to socialize. I want to interact. Otherwise, I would have abandoned Facebook a while ago. And probably will if–as you say–it doesn’t grow up. The fear and hysteria it seems to induce in people over issues most can do nothing about and will move on from as soon as another squirrel darts by is stifling. I have refused to turn my profile pic into an issue even over things I care about. Thanks for the well-thought-out post.

  34. I continue to love the crap out of you and this is another reason why. And yeah…#TeamMystic, baby.

  35. I was just commenting to my husband about the depressing state of Facebook. I agree that Pokemon Go is just the beginning and there will be a slew of similar apps in the very near future. I think it’s great and people are ready for a change. Great article Kristen!

  36. Your hubby is right (about that art).

    • Oy on July 22, 2016 at 12:23 pm
    • Reply

    I agree with you that change is coming. It is going to come faster and faster and faster. That is its nature at this point. We are into the J curve. See Moore’s Law and the Singularity.

    I do not agree that Pokemon is going to eclipse Facebook. Gimme a break. I do think that AR (augumented reality, which is what Pokemon Go is) will definitely push aside our current browser based interface to Facebook and the web. But Facebook has a billion+ users. And they are on the forefront of developing virtual reality (and I’m sure they have their fingers in AR, too). A game like PoGo is not going to supersede them.

  37. Pokemon Go, like its forerunner Ingress, have a lot to offer the world. There will always be jerks and idiots, but yeah… it’s basically a geocaching-style game. The only thing is that the people at Niantic (the creators of Ingress) and Nintendo pushed for the release of Go too soon. They weren’t ready for the influx.

    Oh, and the idiots… But we’ll always have a few of those.

    I unfollowed a lot of them on Facebook myself. It’s just too much otherwise.

  38. Nailed it nailed it nailed it…all. I’ve muted/unfollowed so many people on FB/Twitter because of volume vs. content. Very few because of content, actually. Agree totally with the entirety of this post. I think I’ll share it several times a day for a week! (Just kidding)

    • erthom1 on July 22, 2016 at 12:40 pm
    • Reply

    Enjoyed the post, Kristen. I came across more pigeons than Pokamon Goers while on my travels today. Might that be be a good omen! Hmm…

  39. I love this article, thank you! As a UK charity fundraiser I have been interested in FB adding donation to the options in the US -my problems seem small world 🙂 So glad I follow you!

    • lccooper on July 22, 2016 at 1:20 pm
    • Reply

    Did you all know that texting has actually been around for almost two-hundred years? Yep, in 1837, Samuel Morse invented it, calling it “Morse code.” Now, texting Luddites are being drawn out of their mouse holes with Pokemon’s pack & play. Sad that technology has to drive our need for exercise. So, instead of mumbling and bonking into walls while texting, folks can get fresh air while interracting with imaginary friends in the park. Yuck. I’ve had enough of FB & Twitter Twits, too. Please excuse me, I need to jump onto my stationary bike. My classmates and I are spinning our way across virtual Switzerland today.

  40. I limit my friends on facebook and most of what I see is positive, not the hating you refer to, so on some level I have a hard time relating to this post. I still enjoy facebook as a way to keep up with what family and friends are doing. Still, an interesting and informative post. It’s good to see people getting out of their seats and going out and being with people.

    • Sabine Priestley on July 22, 2016 at 1:36 pm
    • Reply

    I think you’re spot on. Me and others are fascinated to see where this new paradigm will lead. Physically go to a book store and have your favorite character chat with you about the book. Collect all those book boyfriends like pokemon and have a love fest. Take those bad boys and make them into your own fan fiction… the potential is limitless. And yes, my 15yr old is out walking the hood like never before. I damn near fell of my chair when my 17yr old ASKED to go to the outlets. Wtf? I knew this was a game changer. Even better, it’s not just the kids. I’m a geek but not a gamer. Till now. 50 something playing PokemonGo? Um, yeah. Who knew.

  41. If Facebook can figure out a way to get people out of the house, sociallize, but then have a game incentive to return and stay on FB for awhile, they could step up their game. And for the advertisers they desperately need (and FB ads are revolutionary in their reach and targeting), if they could introduce paid incentives for advertisers that would incorporate products/places/people into the game – that would be interesting, too. They are no doubt freaking out about Pokemon already and having meeting after tedious meeting about it. Question is, will there be any will to act? Or will they be too afraid to “compromise” their brand and take people’s eyes off the screen? A lot is at stake for them.

    • R. A. Meenan on July 22, 2016 at 1:39 pm
    • Reply

    I definitely see your points, Kristen, but I’m not sure I agree with all of them. Maybe I just generally have good friends on here, but I’m just not getting as much nasty on Facebook.

    Now I just skimmed, but from what I gathered, you’re saying that there’s a bunch of people posting about politics and that’s what’s killing FB. But rather than saying that’s killing FB, we should look at the source of that. It’s because we’re in a dangerous political climate where no matter who wins, we’re probably in danger. And honestly, if I remember correctly, we had similar issues with our last major election, just not as nasty because we had at least somewhat decent candidates.

    I actually think that unless our new president completely destroys this country, two months after the election will show a calming down of Facebook and twitter.

    I think I also see you saying that Pokemon Go is giving people new ways of socializing. And it is. I’ve seen dozens of people playing in the complex near my home. But that’s ignoring the fact that there are THOUSANDS of social media groups, including stuff on Facebook, where people are socializing over Pokemon Go. I’m a part of several groups myself. Heck, I’m planning to start one that meets regularly. But all the groups I’m a part of are mostly online and they are VERY active.

    So yes, we might be seeing a change, but I don’t think it’s quite as big a change as you’re suggesting here.

    1. The problem is it isn’t just election stuff that is being posted non-stop. It is the BLM, cops shooting, cops being shot, terrorism, a bombing here a bombing there and that isn’t going to go away after the election. It’s transgender bathrooms and gorillas being shot and alligators abducting toddlers.

      In the early tween years you are correct. We just had to ride it through the election cycle and we were good. Recently? Everything is drama (at least in my feed). And I did say that I don’t think FB is going away at all, but I know it is no longer going to be the go-to source for socialization. And you actually help that point with the notion of the Pokemon Go group on FB. FB instead of being the central “theme” is not more of a supplement for another form of interaction.

      But something I didn’t bring up in this post (due to length) was that there is not near the level of invasion of privacy with augmented games. Employers have frankly been out of line and used people’s FB to rule with an iron fist and bully. If we socialize in person we are less worried we might get written up the next day because we offended someone. There has been all kinds of invasiveness with purely socializing on FB. I think as we start using FB more as a supplement, those privacy concerns will diminish because we are away from the computer.

      I think FB is doomed to go away eventually because the super young people are not on it and with no new blood eventually the site would age out.

        • R. A. Meenan on July 23, 2016 at 1:59 pm
        • Reply

        I can see what you mean about the aging out. My students are all on things like SnapChat and Instagram and stuff, though a majority of my students are still on Facebook. I suppose eventually Facebook will die out because of aging, but right now, at least in my experience with college age students, people still prefer Facebook. We’ll see how much that changes though, when I bring up the social media unit this semester.

        Again though, maybe I just have a lucky feed because I generally don’t get a lot of rants in my feed. Though I do get the controversial topics. Usually when I get those though, it opens things up for good discussion rather than angry nonsense.

        I do agree that employers are out of line when they go haunting around people’s FB pages. That’s wrong on a lot of levels. Again, it’s something I discuss with my students. What you put online is never really secure. But that’s the case for any social media, not just Facebook.

        I still disagree with the Pokemon GO thing though, not just because of the fact that there are GO groups everywhere, but because groups are a big part of my personal experience with Facebook. I’m a part of a writing group that has been a seriously uplifting and educational experience because we’re so good and helpful to each other. And there’s a lot of us, all over the world, so without Facebook, it’d be harder to communicate. I’m also a part of a furry group where we regularly sell and buy art since it’s faster and easier than things like Etsy or DeviantART or FurAffinity. Groups are a part of my Facebook experience, and a lot of times, I befriend people in those groups on my normal Facebook. I’ve even gained readers and fans through those groups.

        With the Pokemon GO one in particular, we use it to cross boarders. Most of the groups I’m a part of are nationwide, or even international. I don’t have the option to go out and meet these people in real life for some Pokemon GO interaction. Yes, I am working on one that will be local, but it will never have the size and diversity of the ones that are international.

        Again though, this is just my personal experience with Facebook. I hope more people have my experience than the angry, rant fueled experience that you seem to be having, but I suppose that’s wishful thinking… We do like to get angry and unfortunately, our society encourages us to believe that’s the proper response.

  42. I suck at Pokemon Go. I think I need to go for a walk and level up (but it’s haaaard to walk 2 doggies and catch Pokemon!) 😉 But seriously, FB is a real downer lately, and I just can’t anymore. You can’t even support a petition without a dozen emails begging for money to “show your support”.

  43. Great post today, and I think you’re onto something. Now I just need to figure out how to get a unique Pokemon on my blog so everyone has to visit to get one.

  44. Your post really got me thinking. I downloaded Pokemon Go onto my phone and now I have no idea what to do with it. I see YouTube training videos in my future. The idea that really struck me was the idea that bookstores or libraries might be able to pull in readers and writers. Human face to face interaction–OMG what a concept! Thank you for a thought provoking post!

  45. Omg, D&D Go and I am totally there with you!

    I don’t Facebook. I never felt cool enough or interesting enough. It felt more like a brag fest than connecting. Maybe just me. So it was either that, unpleasantness, or advertising. I took myself over to Netflix.

    Because of that, I can’t really speak to the advent of social media. I personally think it has to offer more to get me to join.

    I was never into Pokemon, and my children are too little, but I’d love to see the bugs worked out of this for a game like this in the future. Something we can do as a family. Maybe even get our tabletop D&D group out join us! Would be so fun to be find a way to include our friends and their kids in a game.

  46. Great post, Kristen! I have noticed that people on FB had been progressively growing more and more vindictive. I still enjoy my interactions on Facebook and I participate in several groups that share my interest, but it’s true that sometimes my feed is like an endless parade of hate and frustration.

    And then there is always that one person that would decide to post mean comments on anything you decide to post on your wall…

    • Nancy Gifford on July 22, 2016 at 2:33 pm
    • Reply

    Way to go girl – you hit the nail on the head!!!

  47. Agree with just about everything you say. Gotta admit I’m one of the people who posts a lot about the scary shit/drama/nastiness in the world, especially on FB. I try to be one of the people who are talking about stuff without being vindictive, nasty or trolling, but I also refuse to “sit on a fence in times of great moral crisis” (which I think this is.)

    At the same time, it’s too much. We need to step back from the nasty shit and relax sometimes. And the way some folks have taken to attacking other people, trolling, and generally being horrible to everyone around them is completely over the top and out of line.

    I think you are right about pokemon go and that both excites and terrifies me. It excites me because I think it’s a seriously awesome development that will lead to great things. It terrifies me because i know several disabled people for whom web 2.0 has been a lifesaver (in some cases literally.) If stuff like pokemon go can make facebook, twitter, etc, backwaters, these people’s access to social connections will disappear, or at least dry up dramatically. If the MMO’s all die out because people are play augmented reality games, what happens to the gamers who can’t walk? D&D go would be awesome, but would also be inexcessible to my partner. So I hope you are right about how pokemon go will take off and spawn a new type of socializing. At the same time I hope you are wrong about web 2.0 becoming an internet backwater.

    1. I don’t think it will be a backwater because there are too many people in the same condition and frankly, it is easier to sneak on FB to chat than run off in the middle of work to play Pokemon Go. And if people get unplugged for a while? They might just chill the hell out. Additionally this is also a vacuum for developers to fill. Perhaps reading books to unlock levels then socialize on FB in the Pokemon Go Books Club. I dunno. I think it will be there, but I think it is not going to be the sole leviathan anymore.

      1. “reading books to unlock levels then socialize on FB in the Pokemon Go Books Club”

        Ooh! I like this idea…

  48. FB will never die as long as there are narcissists needing a hive mind to coil around….

    1. Dunno, they find new hives. MySpace used to be a pretty fancy hive in its day.

  49. I’m still on FB a lot. But I’m focused a lot more on individual’s lives and less on their politics/new links.

    Also, I gushed about being a new-to-Pokémon player, who’s loving PokémonGo on my blog this week.

    I love the gamification of life and excuses to take walks. One of my biggest annoyances with it is that you don’t get steps when the app isn’t active. Which means, no browsing fb until it vibrates! It’s actively taking people away from multitasking.

  50. One of the things I see bringing Facebook to its knees comes from the company itself. I like to post fun stuff too and bring smiles. If I post a picture of Grumpy Cat wearing a Santa hat, I’m good for several hundred views.
    However, when I post something serious about a new book or an interview, I’m lucky if I get out of the teens. I know all about posting times and analytics, etc., and I post both content at the same time. It seems to me, that for a social outlet, Facebook is very particular about what you socialize with.
    So maybe Facebook goes on with a squad of asshats as you figure, or maybe two camps of them. One angry and the other apathetic. What I do know is that without the same reach for what we do seriously as what we do for fun, not many people with something to say will remain. As for Pokemon Go, I refuse to walk around using my phone like a mad scientist looking for the uranium with his Geiger counter.

  51. I have found that getting out and seeing people at LIVE events is more profitable to me than anything that I am currently doing online. If we could create a pokemon go type app for readers to find our books, we might have something.

      • ratherearnestpainter on July 22, 2016 at 10:11 pm
      • Reply

      I think you’re on to something.

  52. I agree. Facebook is getting tired. These things will always go through cycles, I guess. Pokémon Go is definitely a game-changer – not that game of itself, but the concept of a shared augmented reality as a social phenomenon. It will have imitators soon.

    • brendaattheranch on July 22, 2016 at 4:50 pm
    • Reply

    Your post caught my attention because I’ve been thinking more than once in recent weeks “FB has been boring lately.” But I ascribe it to people taking a long vacation till elections are over so they can get back to their normally scheduled Facebooking.

    While I do see some negativity on FB, I still like it, and it really isn’t hard to scroll past the nasty stuff. I like it primarily for staying connected with family & friends (because I despise telephones). I don’t know what actual book sales result from FB, but any time I read a good book I always post the recommendation on FB. Whether people act on it, I couldn’t say.

    I signed up for Twitter several years ago when a writer’s marketing class recommended it and I’ve never used it since. Found it dull as a stick. I just really don’t understand the draw.

    Likewise, I thought the blog aspect of the discussion was interesting. I personally have drastically pared down the number of blogs I read. I’m just not as into them as I used to be. And blogs (at least until you figure out a formula that gives you many minions) are fairly isolated so I just don’t see how they can be a valuable marketing tool for the majority of people.

    And I’ve had people tell me “You should try snapchat, you should try this that or the other.” I could chase social media programs and apps for centuries but I’m just not interested. FB may indeed be on the decline, but I’d still rather use that than any other 5 outlets combined (and yes, I know I’ll have to learn to play in multiple sandboxes to market, but I’m not there yet.)

    1. No you need focus and even if FB is on the decline it has in excess of a billion users. There will still be plenty of people around. I just think we are going to see a large chunk partially unplugging. They will probably go and check FB. Probably upload images of chasing that digital Pikachu whatever ON Facebook. They will check it on quick breaks at work. But will it have the sole unwavering focus it has enjoyed? I don’t think it will.

      But for branding and even just checking in on people? I am still there 😀 .

  53. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Kristen Lamb with an article on the evolution of social media, including Facebook.. I like social gatherings but agree that some threads become nasty very quickly. I too will be interested to see where it leads in the not too distant future..I use in tandem with my blog and check for other bloggers posts but having read this post realise that I am not really using as a chat room anymore except with a small circle of online friends. Head over and read the post and add your views.. they all count.

  54. Fantastic post! I’m so fed up with Facebook and you’ve pretty much summed up why. Seriously, were people always this mean? I still share my blog posts on my page and check my feed once in a while, but I mostly just use the chat feature/messenger app to connect with my friends now. I wonder if Pokemon Go really will be the start of a new era in socializing. Never thought about it that way! Thanks for sharing this great article! Keep up the amazing work! 🙂

  55. My Facebook feed is a combination of dog humor, writing humor and memes and blathering about life in the North. I might have one political thought every six months, but I’m not sure it’s even been that often. I’m not playing Pokemon GO, simply because there’s only so many hours in a day. I have a hard time keeping up with Pinterest some weeks, and I approach it as a writing tool. Facebook gets less than an hour a day, Twitter even less than that. I’m having a hard enough time focusing on the writing! Even though I’m getting out there on Goodreads and trying to find and connect with my (potential) readers, it’s hard enough without adding more distraction. My knitting even misses me! My blogs, writing and improving my craft is work enough.

  56. So many great points, Kristen! For a while, I’ve noticed myself drifting farther away from Facebook and you’ve named all the reasons here. I equate it to road rage, because, like you said the human connection isn’t there. People aren’t held accountable for their behavior, as they would be, face to face. Honestly, aside from its ability to help me keep in touch with some long distance friends and family, I won’t be sorry to see Facebook Go. I love the idea that games like Pokemon Go might get people (kids, especially) out in the world, socializing once again. Let’s hope this prediction of yours is right, as well!

  57. I have to admit that one thing I miss in this digital age is the FTF socializing. I am not much for FB or other social sites. Friends no longer come over to hang out and play games, they video chat or just text me. I am with you on the D&D GO, as that might actually tempt me to try it. I miss the days when my kitchen table was crammed with friends playing either OD&D or AD&D 2E. Today everyone is too busy even to come around for a few rounds of Talisman board game. I do have to admit that Pokemon GO has been a blessing and a curse as a parent. It gets my kids out of the house, but their demands on the cabbie driver increased exponentially.

  58. Love the illustrations!
    I left Facebook three and a half years ago, when I started blogging. It wasn’t the rants, it was the way I didn’t get to see important things – anything, in fact – from some friends, but still got saddled with every tiny detail of what other people were doing.
    On the Pokemon GO side of things, I recently read a blog from a friend (https://thelittlesleepout.wordpress.com/2016/07/19/divided-by-pokemon/) who pointed out how the game makes the divide between the haves and have-nots more clear. Because if you can’t afford a smartphone, data etc, you’re not going to be playing.

  59. In my view, it’s already dead. I have unfollowed all but family and a few close friends. I won’t buy into the tirades over current events or politics. It’s there for me to send birthday greetings, and keep tabs on my distant relatives. It was fun for a while, now…mostly a waste of time.

    Great insights on your post. ?

  60. Hi Kristen 🙂 yours is one of a small number of blogs I read regularly. I love your advice … But I find the thought of an even more fractured social networking environment rather scary. I currently blog (weekly though I struggle), tweet – but have little idea what I’m doing, and maintain a FB page though I know I’m not using it effectively ? I love Pinterest but I’m not really sure how to integrate it into my overall virtual platform. How I will ever incorporate newer models I just don’t know ? I need you to write another book! I’m looking forward to your future posts on how authors can keep using the available platforms in effective, polite and pleasant ways ?

  61. Great post. One thing I love about your is your knack for predicting trends.

    I think a large part of Facebook’s draw is the ‘FOMO’ concept (Fear of Missing Out…). People keep scrolling because they’re afraid they are going to MISS something. The very essence of Facebook preys on this human element…that leads to FB being quite addictive. SO, I believe you are right – if people are leaving, and posts become too similar (like what you said), there will naturally be less of a Fear of Missing Out… and the cycle of decline will continue. And the icing on the cake is Facebook’s poor algorithms, and how weekly I have to put my news feed back to chronological order versus ‘top posts.’

    Also, Monsanto is evil…. Runs away, arms *flailing wildly.* 😀

  62. My daughter reminded me the last time we spoke that FB was originally for the college crowd and then, well it expanded. I don’t take it seriously other than a place to post a snippet and see what my family/friends are up to miles away. Sure there are avenues to make some cash and reach readers but I suck at remembering names and pushing a sale. Anyway, funny post and thanks for the chuckle.

    • ratherearnestpainter on July 22, 2016 at 10:07 pm
    • Reply

    I actually see either Facebook or Twitter combining forces with Pokemon Go-type adventures and creating a new experience that way.

      • ratherearnestpainter on July 22, 2016 at 10:10 pm
      • Reply

      I hit “Post Comment” too fast. What I meant to say as I continued…

      I’m actually very excited about what you’ve offered. I doubt if it’s as smooth a transition as the MySpace-to-Facebook one, but I believe you are correct, and though I was tiring of the drama, I hadn’t considered this next evolution until you pointed it out.

    1. I agree. They are going to have to augment their experience or risk demise.

  63. I get a lot of crap for this opinion but as a long time gamer and amateur sociologist, Pokemon Go is a short term fad that will eventually go the way of MySpace. Few other game properties have the potential to work in the Go format. Once the newness wears off, you’ll see people back to social media.

    The first issue…

    Pokemon Go is what gamers refer to as pay to win. You can play the game without spending a dime but if you have the money you can buy the best of the best. Pokemon does put some randomness in there, you can’t just buy the best monsters but you purchase all kinds of things to increase your chances. As of this writing, someone has already captured every possible Pokemon. Without pay to win, that would not be possible.

    This causes 2 problems. The pay to win player gets bored because they’ve already “beaten” the game. Pokemon can be leveled up so maybe the player will keep buying more but eventually they will get bored. Meanwhile, your free player is wondering why they can only find 20 or 30 Pokemon while someone else has them all. They feel cheated, and for good reason. They realize the only way to compete is by using real money they can’t, or don’t want to, spend for the game.

    Second issue…

    No one is saying, “let’s go to the park and meet people.” They go to the park for Pokemon and might say hi to people when they get there. People are socializing by accident, not as a goal. They are out to catch the monsters.

    The biggest issue…

    The game isn’t much of a Pokemon game. It has the Catch Em All aspect but in a Pokemon game you can travel the entire game world to seek out the ones you are missing. In Go, you’re limited by how far you can travel. While trading is coming to the game, direct battles are not. That has always been a huge draw for these games. It gave you a reason to continue grinding levels. The current gym battles only system is going to get old fast.

    Think back to how huge Farmville was. When did you last get a request for seeds or a chicken?

    My prediction, within 2 months most players will have abandoned the game.

    1. But my point isn’t that Pokemon Go will be the blow that hurts Facebook it is games LIKE Pokemon GO. I think it has opened an interesting door and trust me, if you have war-gamed these limitations? Other VCs and developers of OTHER games have too 😉 .

      1. I don’t know how much you know about World of Warcraft but at it’s peak 12 million players played. It wasn’t the first MMO and many have been released since but none has been as successful.

        The format is pretty easy to replicate and some really big IPs have been used, LotR, Star Wars, Star Trek, even D&D. In theory, all of these should have been at least as popular as a game based on a 90s RTS.

        The problem is that it is really hard to duplicate the success of a phenomenon. Pokemon Go uses an IP that encourages catching em all. I can’t think of another game that would work well in that format.

        But even if a company manages to work their game into the format, there is no reason to believe it will catch hold. It will forever be a Pokemon Go clone.

        Going back to Farmville, a lot of similar games have come and gone since that game took over facebook feeds but none has had the impact it did.

        I have no doubt other games will try to capitalize on the success of Pokemon Go. Some may even build a decent following. But none will match the initial interest and that initial interest will die out as people get bored.

        1. Yes but therein lies my point. WoW wasn’t the first, rather it was a later iteration (with Go this is the beginning or Reality Augmented Gaming). I am hesitant to completely cross-apply WoW and Go because they are apples and oranges. Go is working with merchants out in the world. Gyms, churches and stores are all getting on board to join in the experience and offer benefits to playing beyond the game (I.e. find two monsters and get a free drink/real human social interaction). That is something FB and WoW can’t do. Again, I think it will be an interesting trend to watch and FB is tenacious. I don’t think it will go away but I’m sure they are going to have to get creative and up their game.

          1. I always feel that when I’m disagreeing with you that I have to say this. I think you’re wonderful.

            That out of the way, Go isn’t the first either. Go is actually based on a game made by the same company that sends people to famous landmarks to play.

            It’s not nearly as popular because it didn’t have the name recognition that Go gets from Pokemon.

            I don’t think you’re wrong about Facebook changing. I think we will see a lot of imitators trying to capitalize on the Go phenomenon. I just don’t think they will have any real success. If it follows most game trends, we might end up with 1 decent clone that people actually play.

            Where FB is changing, and they’ve been pretty aggressive, is in targeting YouTube’s audience.

            You and I are going to have to wait and see who is right about Go but FB’s move to try and steal YouTube market share is a matter of record. So, I have a couple of questions for you.

            Do you think FB will be able to put a dent in YouTube or become a serious video platform at all. If so, how do you think authors should approach it?

          2. Quick update, trend show Go has already lost 3 million active users since it’s peak on July 14th. Still has 22 million users but losing more than 10% that quickly does not bode well.

  64. Interesting and timely. I spent the day “hiding” posts on my feed that were filled with political or unpleasant remarks. I find myself avoiding the unhappiness so many people are expressing on Facebook but then again I have friends I enjoy chatting with that I know because of distance I’ll never meet in person.

  65. Your blog helped a lot of thoughts coalesce for me, and I agree that Facebook has degenerated into a den of trolls, for the most part. I also agree that the social side effects of Pokemon Go are positive–again, for the most part. The next stage of the Internet has become similar to online dating; what people post is a far cry from reality. They create this pseudo image of themselves and then populate their Facebook page with strangers who won’t know the difference. It’s a thousand voices out-shouting their neighbor and no one listening.

  66. I think Pokemon Go is just the beginning. Many game franchises can be adapted to the geocaching quest style of play. And businesses are finding ways to get in on the game. Buying lures to attract pokemon (and players) is a huge payback for a dollar or so an hour. Becoming a PokeStop or Gym, even more so.

    There is a PokeStop at the pool across the street from my house. I’m pondering how to take advantage of this geographic opportunity!

    With friends and family who suffer from depression and anxiety, and who struggle to make themselves get out into the world, the benefits of this game are obvious and immense. I very much look forward to seeing where Augmented Reality games take us in the coming weeks and months. And beyond!

    Reblogged: http://mcfrye.com/is-facebook-dying-whats-killing-it-kristen-lambs-blog-reblog-with-commentary/

  67. You’ve managed to put words around my gut feeling and experience.

    I am more afraid that the meanness will become the norm, and we will wind up in a dystopian world where we are forced to have the TC on all the time on the Government channel (was that a Philip K Dick novel / prediction, or someone else?)

    I had just told a friend that FB was getting too big for me; too many notifications, can’t find actual friend’s actual posts between the memes and advertising, and can’t say what you think if you have a female sounding name, without some guy either mansplaining or attacking you personally.

    I don’t like the idea of Pokemon Go and spending money, but I might go join a geocaching or bushwalking club.

    1. I think other games will come along. I don’t believe Pokemon GO will be the only game for long. It can’t be for one reason. Winter. Right now people can wander the streets and parks but that is only going to last a could more months for many places in the world. Also, its success has shown other companies opportunities.

      And yeah the dystopian thing has been heavy on me too. Hopefully though we can get this thing headed in a better direction.

    • lesedgerton on July 23, 2016 at 7:40 am
    • Reply

    FB today seems to operate under the old adage: “If you can’t say something bad about someone, don’t say anything at all.”

    1. It has gotten AWFUL. And I have been on Facebook since 2007. Trust me. I have seen enough to notice the deviation.

        • ratherearnestpainter on July 26, 2016 at 6:07 pm
        • Reply

        I haven’t noticed quite the hostility that you talk about, but that might be because I was relatively quick to unfollow people. I mean, if somebody sends me a friend request and then posts lots of disparaging blanket statements about immigrants, then clearly they never knew me in the first place. Of course, my Facebook experience was mostly with a close circle, relative to the thousands of friends that a professional writer might aspire to.

        I have noticed that it’s not as interesting as it once was. It must be related to your point because the lively conversations I used to be involved in are no longer there. Either I’ve unfollowed the interesting people because they got to be too much (I don’t think it’s this; I don’t think they were the same people), or the interesting people are no longer interested in Facebook. It’s not new any more, there are trolls to deal with and maybe they’ve found other things to do with their lives.

    • Kim on July 23, 2016 at 8:37 am
    • Reply

    I hope you’re right about Facebook. I left FB completely 2 years ago and it was the best decision – stress levels went way down. I’m not surprised the negativity has gotten worse. And it’s not only that, it’s everyone portraying their lives as so wonderful and perfect, complete with airbrushed and altered selfies that had me wanting to jump off a cliff!

    Pokemon GO rocks. I love it, my kids love it and I hope that trend continues.

  68. I have a few friends who’ve unfollowed pretty much anyone who said anything they didn’t like, which kind of makes me wonder why they added them in the first place. Me? I don’t bother unfollowing people. I only interact with the friends who post cool stuff, or that I talk to on a regular basis, so Facebook’s algorithms screen out the crap for me 😉

    Weirdly I have friends on Facebook who actually THANK me for the stuff I post. I wasn’t sure there was an audience for macabre museums, geeky science joke memes and photos of my home town but apparently there is!

    Personally I won’t be downloading Pokemon Go because I have too much to do at the best of times but if there was a Harry Potter Go? You’d never see me again!

  69. UGH – I couldn’t have said it better. FB is an angsty teenager who needs a Gibbs slap in the worst way! I have reservations about Pokemon Go but it IS getting people out and about and I’m excited to see how technology and social media builds upon it.

  70. Facebook is my biggest referrer to my blog, after search engines. If it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t be on it at all. I just don’t find it FUN! I have a private WhatsApp group for staying in touch with family. So why would I even need Facebook? I’m sick of people showing off about their holiday, their kids, what they’re eating, their pets. Its BORING!

  71. I hate FB. So much hatred and ranting. Maybe FB attracts this kind of person because they can say whatever they like and there is no accountability. Unfortunately, I have no idea how to make them accountable. But I know that I see more abuse here in one day than I’ve seen in years in the real world. You’re right when you said “all-out-want-to-stab-it-in-the face-adolescence”. I’ve blocked hundreds of people, and just unfriended about 2000, probably more to come.

    I came onto FB to sell my books. Well, I don’t sell much, especially since I refuse to pay FB for ads. From what I hear, FB ads don’t work anyway. All FB does now is anger me. Even with 2000 people gone, I still get ranting. I may never get rid of all of it until I leave.

    I post happy things, and yes, there are people who like my stuff and want me to stay. But it’s getting harder and harder to stay happy in the face of all the negativity there.

    Let FB die. It serves no good purpose, if it ever did.

  72. Very interesting post indeed. I’ve found myself using facebook less and less and mostly for keeping up with certain groups – like nanowrimo, my dorm mates and health discussion boards.
    Now I’m really sad my phone can’t do pokemon GO. My boyfriend plays it and it’s kinda fun, though it can also be challenging when you’re out for a walk and constantly have to stop. *Sigh*
    It IS mostly nerds you meet at those posts, in my experience, though, but that may just have been me recognizing kin.
    And I totally agree – a D&D GO would get me fired up for a run!

  73. This is so interesting. I’m not playing PG but I love the idea, and love joking with my friends who are playing about it too… I’ve also seen my FB newsfeed turn into a political hatefest more times than I can count recently (I’m British, so the Brexit backlash for a start)… it’s also not what I’m there for – I want to see what’s going on in my friends’ personal lives and keep up with them, and share where I am and what I’m up to… and as you say, have a laugh… I care about what’s going on in the world, I do… and I don’t want to bury my head in the sand… But I also don’t want to get into useless rants & comment wars when I’m on social media…. the Winnie the Pooh memes post Brexit and the arguments that ensued between those who found them humorous and those who found them offensive absolutely blew my mind, and I was sick to death of seeing the overwhelming negativity from so many people…. So I can totally see the sense of what you’re seeing coming….

  74. Okay, I probably should figure out how I might use Pokemon Go to market books, but then it could very well be a trend that peaks in several weeks or a few months and then disappears as more reports of people falling off cliffs, getting struck by cars, etc., surface. I’ve never yielded to Facebook. I pictured it as a major time sink to absorb hours of the day–perhaps like binge watching ET or TMZ. Since I’m not on it, I can’t say. So it won’t bother me if it fades away. But don’t fail to note that Justin Timberlake resurrected MySpace as a music sharing and promoting site after it had all but disappeared. Zuckerberg may find some other uses for his wealth. Didn’t know that trolls were becoming a problem on Facebook too, but they are everywhere. But you know the motto: don’t feed the trolls.

  75. Kristin, this meme’s for you: https://memegenerator.net/instance/69328017. Great as always!

  76. Reblogged this on Don Massenzio's Blog.

  77. Turns out it costs a business about $1.19/hour to set up a Pokemon lure at their location. My son, who jumped into Pokemon Go with both feet at the very beginning, explained the craze to his boss at a local bar, and suggested he ante up for a lure. His boss still didn’t understand the game, but he’s a savvy entrepreneur, and in a couple of days, he handed my son a box of business cards that say:

    Brylan Ranscht
    Sycamore Den
    Pokemon Liaison

    So now he’s in charge of all things Pokemon, and he’s looking into having the Nintendo/Niantic folks designate Sycamore Den as a gym.

    You’re right, the landscape is changing.

    As for Facebook, I have a circle of friends, many of whom are writers, who are kind and funny and try to avoid the circus of American politics, but once I started posting on WordPress, my FB time took a nose dive. Besides, the dreaded FB algorithm seem to share each person’s posts with a diminishing percentage of their friends. It’s worse if you have a page. 16% distribution was never a stellar achievement to begin with. I suspect that may also contribute to the decreasing relevance of FB.

  78. No FB no PG, so not sure if I could relate exactly to what you are saying. Interesting reading though.
    By the way, you are not being paid by Nintendo, I hope. Just kidding.??
    Now time for me to take a walk, for my cup of tea.

  79. Libraries are also jumping on the Pokemon Go wagon: https://elainthemiddle.wordpress.com/2016/07/13/app-review-pokemon-go/

  80. I downloaded it this morning after reading this. Played it for about twenty minutes, thought it was rather boring, gave it a second chance a little while ago, still thought it was boring and deleted it. It’s great that it gets some people outside. The outside is usually enough to get me outside. I think Facebook more than anything else will kill Facebook. The fact that it tends to be anti-social media rather than social media is what is killing it.

    1. Well I think there will but more games like this following this one’s success. I haven’t played yet. Doesn’t really pique my interest but I see SO many adaptations that would. A Walking Dead version? A D&D version? Oh yeah…

  81. With the exception of an author group I belong to, I simply don’t get anything out of facebook anymore. At it’s best it feels like a waste of time. At it’s worst, it’s led to me liking people a whole lot less. Please, save the ranting for phone calls with your bestie! Preferably from the privacy of your own homes, and not in line at the grocery store. No one wants to hear it!

  82. I LOVE POKÉMON GO! It’s making people act like humans: thinking, talking, helping each other. We’re exercising, for goodness sake! FB makes me ill and I now do “drive-bys” just to touch base with friends and family and put fresh content on my company’s page.

  83. Just today, my 16 year old daughter asked me to take her to the mall, a place we have been in probably more than a year. The reason? The Claire’s store was having a “poke-party”. If you caught two pokemon in the store, you got 10% off. She made some new friends, got some new accessories that we probably would have bought on Amazon. The best part was sharing an ice cream in food court afterwards.

    • Tan Ya Hui on July 23, 2016 at 10:56 pm
    • Reply

    This post was really insightful. I agree with many of the points here. We’ve gotten too comfortable with social media that we begin to do things that we normally inhibit such as posting negative postings etc. As a adolescent, I often ranted and vented my feelings on Facebook. I eventually stopped when my relative called me out on it because I kept using vulgarities. (Might need to clean out that part of the timeline…) Every once in a while I would post something about my opinion. However, the remaining 90% of the time I’m often silent because I do not have much to say as an introvert. What do I post about?

    It is only recently that I have been sharing funny things or inspirational videos by tagging others to talk about it. In fact, the only reason I use Facebook is because I still want to keep in touch with my ex-guildmates. Sometimes I just can’t be bothered to use the other social media to keep track with my friends. Not very good with socializing either… I should really do more than to hide in my shell. Welp, maybe the shift will change a lot of things. I am definitely looking forward to Pokemon Go, but it’s probably not getting released in my country any time soon. It does bring a change to the way we interact. I really do look forward to the future and what it will bring.

  84. Great post, Kristen. I just find it sad that people need Pokemon to get them out of the house…What about having a coffee with friends? Nature? Sports?

    • PamAnne Mallory on July 24, 2016 at 3:04 am
    • Reply

    I agree with you (mostly) until you reached Pokemon Go and other potential games of similar design. Facebook was/is a boon to those people like me who are house-bound or wheelchair-bound. I cannot play any game that requires large amounts of movement. While this will not be a major problem for me, I’ll just go back to reading, others of my imaginary friends have never been very interested in books and they will lose their very necessary human interactions. Of course, being a pedant, I don’t mind discussing politics, religion, politics, etc. It gives me a lovely opportunity to explain to people why they’re wrong. I do agree though that such discussions should remain at a peaceful level. No screaming and no ad hominem attacks allowed.

    1. But these game developers will also see people with limited movement as a niche so I am curious what they will come up with.

  85. Interesting ideas. I have been fed up with FB for years now, but I stay there because it’s where I can keep up with folks I otherwise have no contact with.

    My only worry about Pokemon GO style web is that I am disabled and cannot walk much, so there would need to be some kind of alternative to the making people walk to get the next installment of a book! But as long as such needs were catered for I am in favour. I don’t play myself (no smartphone!!!) but am one of those who see it as a good thing rather than a stupid thing.

  86. Reblogged this on BLOG SCOUTS on WordPress and commented:
    THIS is one of the best discussions on the reason we SHOULD blog and watch ourselves on Social Media. (read all the comments, too)

  87. Have you ever read the book Ready Player One by Ernest Cline? I have three kids 10-14 and they love their devices. They all get along, and I like that they will venture out together to play Pokemon Go (with the stern admonition that if they do anything stupid, I will be very cross). But having read the Cline book, I fear the future holds a lot less walking. Here’s the blurb: In the year 2044, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he’s jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade’s devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world’s digital confines—puzzles that are based on their creator’s obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them…
    It’s a terrifying premise.

  88. LOL! I agree about the hate spew on FB. I have a lot of facebook friends than complement me on the cheerfulness of my page. Sure I still post about my new book, or like and share a post about things that interest me that perhaps not everyone agrees with. But I don’t get into a shouting match with anyone who comes back with nastiness. I just stop answering. I haven’t had to block anyone, yet. But I’m sure it will happen eventually.

    I’m also interested, casually, in the Pokeman Go thing. It just sounds like fun and I could stand to lose a pound or two.

    Thanks for the great post.

  89. If they create a decent D&D GO, I might decide to get a smart phone. As for FB, I couldn’t care less if it suddenly died. They may be a private company with their right to police it how they want, but it’s become so biased that it might as well be dead to half the country.

  90. I matured from Facebook because it is just full of foolishness and so many reasons: https://myfairdiary.wordpress.com/2016/07/24/facebook-is-becoming-a-drag/

  91. I did enjoy this post. There were so many things with FB that I agree with. I really think with so much online social media we become less social with the person or people next to us. Look around in public. Everyone is on their phone. No eye contact, much less verbal contact. As with all your posts, you make me smile and sometimes LOL. Thanks!

    1. Tell me about it. I went to get my hair done a week ago and beauty shops used to be the hub of socialization and yet as I sat there surrounded by women all waiting on their hair to process, no one was talking. Everyone was glued to their phones 🙁 .

  92. Very interesting article! I wonder if you know what a rare gift it is to be able to look at data and make sense out of it. I look at data and garner no wisdom from it at all, and so muddle my way through doing the best that I can.

    I haven’t played Pokemon Go but my daughter recently used it at her job at a major insurance company. She is helping with a Fitness Initiative and the first meeting that she led in her life was to challenge her coworkers to see who could get the most steps playing Pokemon Go. (I thought it was a brilliant idea, but I may be a tad biased. 😉 ) The idea was well received and they met over the weekend and had a great time.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts! Those I can make sense out of. 😉

  93. i haven`t played Pokemon go and unfortunately, I won`t be, I can hardly walk the length of our street. Disabled and according to specialist, will not get better. I don`t say this to gain sympathy, but to add my views of Pokemon go, and facebook. I agree that facebook is dire, too much, too much, I don`t want to know what anyone is having for dinner or what they think of toilet paper. I had my space and loved it. You could do so much with your my space page that facebook never had, i rp`d on my space and loved it. Then it was bought by fb and sucked. My prediction for fb is that it will have to radically change its ways if it is to keep up with the change that has swept everyone. On the other hand, the downside of Pokemon go is everyone will be so busy running around that they will miss the bigger picture going down. Yep, a little paranoia might save your life one day. However, if they do a D & D go, I`ll save up and buy an electric wheelchair and I`m off. lol Great post loved it.

  94. So many interesting comments, Pokemon Go is certainly promoting active debate and discussion. I shall leave FB aside as I think as with all social media the individual chooses when, what and how much to engage. However in your post you mention various family members looking up from their screens, joining up and joining in – as do many of the comments, and that is a plus. I am wondering what the ‘catch’ is with this game as finding Pokemon and playing the game in such numbers has to be attracting advertisers as you hint at in the post. At first I wondered if folk would be lured into places with entrance fees, however that is not the case, it has definitely been woven into the game development and it will evolve (as the characters) as the game progresses. Instead of viewing it as some scary game where harm will happen – used as positive direct examples of how to keep safe when playing games/using online technology for children – in the comments folk mention getting up and out with their children more often than before, that has to be good, people talking and playing together also good, those with limited movement, link up with others, there is more to the game than running (no need to run at all) to catch the critters, it can be a team effort, just enjoy the interaction with other human beings and anything that gets people up and about and lets face it less scared of each other has to be positive. I love your pictures K – so appropriate and funny, that is the key in all this – keep it light, keep it funny and keep it positive and less narcissistic. Great post!

  95. Great post. Especially over the last 6-12 months I’ve noticed a real change in the way people use FB. I agree with previous comments on this post that it’s not just people ranting about the political environment across the world but the hyper-salivating need to froth about all the dreadful things that are happening in our world.

    The news is all over that already, I don’t want it permeating my social media too and it does put me off using FB. In fact I noticed today that one of our major broadcasters has just added a ‘Good news’ section to its website. Maybe they’ll spruik the benefits of Pokemon Go there.

    • Stephanie Scott on July 26, 2016 at 7:59 am
    • Reply

    The most time I spend on Facebook is within private and sometimes secret groups which are actually social. I’m never scrolling the feed anymore because of the negativity. I think the worst is that the negativity comes from family that I feel are too smart to hold the racist or demeaning opinions that they have. Or they’re sharing content that is meant to troll rather than a thoughtful article. I’ve posted a few political things but they are usually blog posts that are more about a person’s experience versus something nasty that condemns you. And even then I still get awful comments again from family who I don’t want to cut out of my life but I don’t understand why they say such hurtful things. I don’t know why Facebook gives that permission when they would never say something like that in person.

    Although Facebook owns instagram, for now at least Instagram is a bit of a reprieve from the anti-social Facebook and even Twitter experiences. Instagram is visual and those shouting ads in their photos usually are ignored. I’ve made some amazing connections on Instagram as an author. No one’s going on Instagram to be sold to, however people are making serious money and selling books through Instagram. Because they’re not using it as an ad farm. It’s not through Instagram ads or pictures of loud text BUY MY BOOK ONLY $0.99!!! It’s through good visual content and actual connections in captions, comments, and liking other people’s stuff. So at least for me Instagram is more social.

    It’s such a compelling idea what Pokemon go is doing. Pokemon go really is a game changer. Not that Pokemon go will stay around forever but this is going to be built on and you better believe there are companies right now looking to make their own version or build upon it. I really do think you’re onto something here!

    1. “I think the worst is that the negativity comes from family that I feel are too smart to hold the racist or demeaning opinions that they have.” Oh, racism and all other bigotry has nothing to do with intelligence levels, and everything to do with wilful indoctrination. A lot of people I knew on Facebook where in your position.

  96. Like I said, I’m done with Facebook. I like to follow politics and I care very much about social justice in the world today. But I always tried to present my arguments with care and, most importantly, with facts. Of course, that went all to waste when wading into comments sections full of racists, sexists, demagogues, petty-foggers and every other -ist and -ic under the sun. Total waste of time. No civility, no care, no proper argumentation. (No grammar/punctuation, either, but I guess that’s picky). I would have been much better off maintaining a blog and inviting civil and intelligent discussion than wallowing in the gutter with some folks on “social” media.

  97. Hi Kristen, Very interesting analysis. I’m not sure about this. I tried the game and after a brief use (caught only two of the little blighters!) and discussion with a colleague who is a madly keen player I can see many people feeling the pressure to out-do others and, after realising it’s eating up too much of their lives, drop out of the thing. I already caught a little of that pressure and after considering the fact that I already need 28-hour days to do everything I want to do, I uninstalled it. So I think it’s a fad, unfortunately. Many people will be interested at first but there will be a reasonably rapid to steady decline over the next 6 months or so. However, I believe FB may be going down for other reasons that have more to do with attempting to monetise the pseudo-social aspect of people’s lives. Businesses may be willing to pay for FB services but I doubt individuals will and they may resent this “selling out” and gradually drift away.
    Cheers, Richard.

    1. Do you think these two situations: overloading our days and finding ourselves in competition, are aspects of our lives today? With the advent of machines to ‘make things easier’ I think we’ve started taking on more and more until we go harder and longer with perhaps less satisfaction. Simplifying things, paring down possessions and activities, has become as much of a competition as acquisition.

      1. Yes, these two things are definitely part of our lives but we have the choice to minimise when we feel overwhelmed. But I’m not convinced that paring down is a competition. I think we settle when we feel a satisfactory balance has been achieved between what we know we need to do and what we would like to do, given the sacrifices we have to make, regardless of others’ similar efforts.

  98. FB may die with a bang and not with a whimper as you describe. 🙂 I just stumbled across this article: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2016/07/29/facebook-may-owe-billions-more-to-irs-in-taxes.html

  99. Ha ha! You had me rolling. I’ve been following you for awhile, wondering where your social media insights will lead you. Never guessed it would be Pokeman Go. But it’s a good point. How many turn to Facebook to escape from something else? Or to let something inside escape? At least P.G. requires physical activity.

    Probably we should expect more political trolls and rants in the coming months as a certain, small segment get caught up in the siren call of the Internet One Ring—”Do it! You know you want to rant in public! Be mean! It will be good! Do it, my Precious! Yes! Yes! Politics are black and white! Evil and good, and only the good, only YOU will reign!”

    Leaned on your earlier books for a boost into internet-for-branding, and have kept a toe in ever since, about two tweets a week, Facebook visits maybe two or three times a week, plus blog posts. Even that marginal participation is a huge time sink, between keeping up with comments, visiting others’ blogs, remembering to Tweet, updating old blogs, etc. There is no time to deal with trolls, or writers whose political frontal lobes aren’t very internet savvy, so out they go! Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I don’t give a hoot if you disagree with me. Conflict is what sparks change. But be nice about it, please!

    I’m with the guy just above who thinks P.G. is a flash in the pan. It will fade to the Dungeons and Dragons arena, where Dance, Dance Revolution still styles. So what next, guru?

    By the way, not only are you a nerd, you are a production machine! Hope you’re getting enough sleep these days. Cheers—

  100. Wow! Everyone loved your article! Congratulations!
    As far as I go, I am really enjoying Facebook. I am a member of Facebook groups that help me promote my blog posts. I really value their support. I’ve made some good friends that way too.
    As far as my other connections, it is a great way to stay in touch with them .

    1. I love Facebook. It really just needs a Snicker’s bar right now, LOL.

  101. Facebook is dead to me anyways, the only reason I still have an account is to keep in touch with one or two people and it’s where all my old school people I used to know that never talk to me. Hmmm… What’s the point of having it again?
    Myself and my family were the subject of a rant, apart from being unpleasant to see it was useful to see what people think. They forget, you can see pretty much anything if someone tells you it’s there.

    • Erik on October 22, 2016 at 7:24 am
    • Reply

    You use question marks in your writing far more often than is necessary, to the point where they lose their effect and become annoying to the (at least myself) reader.

    • Stacy on November 28, 2016 at 7:56 pm
    • Reply

    I was on FaceBook for 5 years. I’ve noticed more and more stupidity, bullying, racial slurs, threats and outright hate.
    I’ve seen atheists flock to so many Christian sites just to mock Christians, call them stupid and then try to claim the Christians were forcing their beliefs down their throats. It made no sense.
    I’ve seen vegan nazis purposely go to hunting sites and other sites they know are pro meat just to tell them to stop showing meat on their page. It’s beyond ridiculous.
    And, I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen brainless, immature brats tell others to kill themselves just because they didn’t agree with them or had a disability.
    It’s like they were more important, their rights are all that mattered and if you didn’t agree, you were a bigot and hater.
    I just got fed up with all the idiotic stuff on FaceBook. I wasn’t about to be PC and a lot of spineless people can’t stand that.
    I said I will not powder their bottons and they should go change their Huggies.
    I deleted my FaceBook account in October.
    I never felt better.
    I refuse to create accounts for any more social pages like Instagram.
    Many people feel brave enough to act stupid and hateful when they can give a fake name and avatar. But, in real life, they are the biggest wimps.
    Really, who needs that crap?

  102. Reblogged this on Nancy Segovia and commented:
    What do you think? Is she right or not?

    • Todd on May 3, 2017 at 9:45 am
    • Reply

    You had me until Pokemon Go. Granted, I have the luxury of existing in May 2017.

    It’s not going to be another technology that eliminates FB, twitter linkedin. I closed all my accounts for the very reasons you mentioned here. I was perpetually pissed off and had a disingenuous engagement with reality. The constant bombardment of foolishness did me in. And I was contributing to it!

    We are growing out of it. Social media has become a congregation spot for stupid people. I am trying not to say that condescendingly but I don’t think you can. I cringe at most comment sections and am looking for a space to truly collaborate on the issues we have. I guess we will have to wait on Elon’s neural lace.

    • tim nash on May 5, 2017 at 7:19 pm
    • Reply


    Excellent article- very perceptive and i think accurate observations on future of social media.
    Firslty with facebook is the annoying way that it has infiltrated areas of the internet that have practically nothing to do with it besides the need of a password / also there is messanger which is in its own right turning into the ‘mirc’ of web 2.0 mirc first steps of socializing at school/ messager – teenage friends you go to movies with / tinder immaturely date on looks alone

    whats next, i can only imagine marriages are not going to last.

    pokemon go and ingress- these sort of flourished and burnt out quick

    we have whole generations of kids and adults who play many games, the games like pokemon have to scarily intigrate properly with ppls life.

    i think, if money or currency is a available to be earnt on a pokemon go or
    ingress like format it could be the new form of work.

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