Facebook has had 15 years to change the world. In 2003, Mark Zuckerberg launched Facemash, a website where he collected photographs and names of students from Harvard University. A year later, on February 4, the programmer and four other students turned that idea into a company, not knowing that it would become the queen of social networks: Facebook.
Facebook has been able to replace the human warmth of the face to face with the screens and to mark the way to the rest of the networks that came later.
“The problem is not how we gossip, but what we show about ourselves.”
At first, Facebook served as a mural in which to comment on anything. Now, the image has eaten ground. Even brevity is rewarded: when a user writes a few words, the platform allows you to publish it as a photo, on a background of any color.
Our way of being and relating is no longer the same, thanks in large part to the invention of Zuckerberg. We are concerned about the image we project, with which we show how many friends we have and how fantastic our lives are. The first change that Facebook brought was the way to stay and tell our plans:
“Although there was a transition with Messenger, the change generated by Facebook is to be able to reflect with images what you are doing or where you are, that visual touch that has been amplified with Instagram, they are not telling me anymore, I am seeing it.”
Paradoxically, since Facebook was born, it has given us the possibility to connect with more people and expand our circle of acquaintances, however, at the same time it has made us more lonely. The social network has even been able to change our way of being, our concerns. We do not see, touch, smile, as the psychologist José Antonio Molina, an expert in addictions, points out.
Is it so crazy to think that the world that describes Falling Down – the famous and disturbing Black Mirror chapter in which people’s lives depend on the qualification obtained in an application – can become a reality? It seems not, says Madrigal, because I like we have come to care for everything: “We live pending what we generate.” That I like was born on Facebook.
“We are in a continuous ‘big brother’ in which we are the cameras and we give an opinion of everything. That started with Facebook.”
The company closed 2018 with an increase in profits that translates into more than 19,000 million euros, according to its own data, although the social network is much more than a business.
“We are in a continuous big brother in which we are the cameras and we give an opinion of everything. And all this started with Facebook.”
This is the BEST and the WORST parts the social network has given us:
The end of the barrier with people who seemed unreachable
We can reach where it was not reached before, “information has become universal,” says the network expert. It has allowed us to connect with people who previously seemed impossible to do so.
A push to Culture
The blockade of certain circles has been broken, for example that of the record companies, which “decided who entered the circuit and who did not,” he explains. Those who are dedicated to creativity and culture have found on Facebook a great platform with which to reach all audiences.
Variety of contents
Before, Facebook gave us the possibility to write a lot, but we live in a society in which time is increasingly controlled, and it does not get lost in reading a text. We have chosen the path of fast consumption. “That’s why Instagram has eaten ground,” explains the expert. And that’s why Facebook opted for the video (the shorter the better), despite the fact that at first it offered up a tool for notes.
A compilation of memories and reminders
No more anger over forgetting to congratulate someone. You will never forget a birthday thanks to Facebook. In addition, the social network also points to the ‘anniversaries of friendship’. This, the experts say, has a positive and a negative part: we lose memory and we have to remember what we have done, as well as making us want to show something even though it happened a year ago. At the same time, it helps us to review the last twelve months, something useful to reflect on what we have invested time and what not.
“It generates that we live depending on memories and that we show it again, that we want to teach more.”
Facebook has also generated a disinhibiting effect by not having people in front of you, both for good and for bad: you can not empathize in the same way, for example, if you do not see someone cry.
Loss of naturalness
There is a great difference between the murals of Facebook in its first years of life and those of now: naturalness no longer exists. According to Madrigal, it is because before the people did not realize the real scope of the platform. In fact, there has now been a decline in the number of users and publications. In addition, the aspect of what we share is taken care of more. At the beginning, any opinion was published.
More social, but with screens
We have greatly amplified our circle of acquaintances, but not our face-to-face activity. It matters less to go out with friends than to upload a photo. Facebook has suddenly entered a generation, that of millennials, who have not before found an example to follow, but who have faced the use of networks without prior training. That has generated them even, dependence.
There are people whose life does not seem full and, seeing a reality that seems pretty (of which they do not have to be participants), they get hooked. They are problems linked especially to teenagers. With dependency important things are disregarded and now it is prioritized to be connected.
Need to pretend
We want to demonstrate and amplify what we do and we have the need to wait to be judged. We do not do things because we want to, but to generate an opinion. And that can also generate stress or the feeling of being separated from a group.
New way of making “friends”
There are people who complement their circle of friends and who replace it with networks. “Having 700 friends is also a problem,” says the psychologist, because it is not real, it is impossible. Nowadays, it seems that prestige is given by the number of friends on Facebook.
The abuse of social networks is associated with diseases such as depression, or low self-esteem, rejection of body image, stress or existential vacuum, which translates into social isolation and lack of objectives. Succeeding on Facebook means being popular. “People who constantly use Facebook have more depressive symptoms compared to those who almost do not use it,” says Marina Díaz Marsá, president of the Psychiatric Society of Madrid. In addition, it reveals that in a study prepared with 1,500 young people between 11 and 25 years old, half said that Facebook exarcerated their anxiety and two thirds that the social network worsens cyberbullying. Networks are intrinsically linked to mental health.
Lack of privacy
Yes, we have the ability to control what is shown on Facebook, but more network training would allow us to become aware of the scope of the publications. Facebook burst in so suddenly that “there have been years of lack of control and with people who were not aware of what they were doing or what they were publishing, we have had the problem of not knowing the limits.