Tuesday, 22 October 2013

A 'no Facebook' diet on the cards

A detox is just what the doctor prescribed, for a generation of young Bengalureans who are held prisoner by the iron clutches of social networking. So, while social networking and microblogging sites continue their reign over web world, an increasing number of young netizens in the city are opting to deactivate their social networking accounts, even if only for a month, as a means of de-addiction.

“I found out that my friend was off Facebook only when I tried tagging her in a photo and couldn’t find her on my list. When she told me about her detox plan, I decided to jump in too,” reveals Aprajitha Menon, a techie, “The plan is to complete one month with absolutely no FB or Twitter; and then, if we feel like it, get back in. But even then, the idea is to not log in more than once a day. Honestly, it is a very liberating feeling. Social networking sites tend to overload you with unnecessary information. Now, it feels like several hours have been added to my day, and I can do so many more things!”

Dristi Das, a financial consultant, adds, “I realised that Facebook had begun to affect me. Seeing my friends getting happily married, making babies and traveling to exotic locales, made me think less of myself. I had become addicted to knowing what was happening in everybody else’s life. Thus, the Facebook Detox Diet. It’s like a weight off my shoulder. If all goes well, I hope to never get back onto it.”

The detox is also a means to prove one’s will power to oneself. Rahul Gopal, a student, claims that his Twitter addiction got so out of hand, that he would, against his will, check his account every 10 minutes, and put up pointless updates. “My girlfriend suggested I try the detox, and this is when I realised the extent of my addiction because it was so tough to stay away. Now, I am 20 days sober, and feel great.

More than anything, I had to prove to myself that I could do it and also get rid off my dependence on social networking sites.”

Marie Paul, ad professional, rues, “I wish I could go on a no-social networking diet. But, in my profession, I cannot afford to not be clued-in through the day. The very thought of having to enter the office and logging in makes me feel so unhappy these days.”

But, there are those who are apprehensive. Says copy writer Puneet Santosh, “I don’t know how well a detox would work. I mean, if they’re going to stay off it only for about a month and then come back, won’t the addiction re-build?" So what are we saying then?
"It is merely a style statement, I think. People think it makes them sound super-mature, if they say they are on an FB-break.”Paul added
Rahul concludes, “In spite of the detox going well, it is there at the back of my head that my account is still there, having a little nap under the bed. It’s just like when I say I am going to quit smoking, and put away the cigarettes… till the weekend!”

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