I am on Facebook, but as my pseudonym, DaisyDeadhead. I am too nervous about certain individuals locating me (see BAD TO THE BONE reference in my last post) to use my actual name, which as many of you know, is pretty distinctive.
I think the hypnotizing aspect of Facebook comes only when one uses one's real name. Apparently, and in relatively short order, you subsequently hear from everybody you ever knew in your life; it casts quite a spell. I think it can probably be compared to the first time we all signed on (I speak of those of us who did not grow up using computers) and started frenetically searching for people, places and things... and holy smoke, we FOUND em, too. It seemed miraculous and wonderful.
Facebook has the added pleasure of people looking for you, too.
It also has games and puzzles and photo albums and all kinds of nifty applications. It's bloody intoxicating. But there is a down-side, as DEAD AIR regular JoJo tells us. She describes her immersion in "all Facebook, all the time," and then describes how this state of affairs "abruptly ended when I was unceremoniously disabled by their software bot on Friday, August 14, 2009 at 5:30 pm, in the middle of my fave game, Pet Pupz."
Huh? Did you even know they did this to people? I didn't.
Jojo describes her Kafkaesque experience:
My offense? Wait for it.......I wrote on people's walls too fast!!!!! *GASP* DUN-DUN-dun. Apparently, one of the lovely drawbacks of Facebook, which I am now finding out about, is that, if you do ANYTHING too fast: comment, add friends, delete friends, send messages, receive messages, write on walls too much, send friend requests, etc., the bot picks up on it as "spamming". Then the person's account gets red flagged as a possible spammer. Earlier this spring, I had been carrying on some simultaneous conversations, via the comment box, on some of my friends' profiles. My commenting ability was promptly shut down for about 6 or 7 days. Since then, if I get too carried away commenting, I had 2 "pink slips" pop up on my screen, warning me that I was engaging in "abusive behavior."Some of us are not teenagers looking for dates, some of us are GROWN WOMEN who have TYPED all of our adult lives for one company/corporation or another...as I have, as Jojo has. We type FAST. We learned to type our comments in the margins of our lives, when there was time, or (in my case) actually paid for how fast we could type. (Doing transcription, I was actually paid by the word or by the keystroke.)
Lemme wreck that Facebook thingie: boom, boom, boom, clackety-clackety go the keys.
Too fast? Amazing. Capitalism is all about faster-faster-faster, but when we are faster? They penalize you and assume there is something wrong.
And I thought they WANTED people to post and comment? There are certainly millions of opportunities, which seem to be increasing exponentially every time I sign on:
OK, for one thing, Facistbook are the ones that gave us the opportunity to comment on every single brain fart on our newsfeeds. When I first joined in the spring of 2008, all you could do was write on your friends' Walls. Now, you can comment on every quiz, application, status, video, photograph, poll, WHATEVER, that your friends publish. Then when you do so, they shut you down as a spammer. I am seeing more and more people show up in various chat rooms/chat boards, with the same problem I had: "All I did was respond to messages in my inbox", "All I did was write Happy Birthday on my friends' Walls".....etc.Jojo tried to correct the situation, which she assumed was some bureaucratic error. (And it was, Facebook assumed she was spamming.) But this was still another nightmare:
God forbid there be an actual HUMAN that works there. There is zero customer service. All I was able to do was send an email to email@example.com, and all I got was a canned "thank for your inquiry, we'll look into it and get back to you in a few days" response. I have dug up every email I can find for Facistbook, to no avail. One of my friends sent me a phone number she found, but you get sent into a general voice mailbox.Jojo describes the feelings she had as she was cut off from all her friends and familiar internet activities, which had become mostly Facebook-oriented.
My friends even started a group, petitioning for my return. Of course most of you already know that since you all joined. It makes me feel so good to see the names of people I know personally, friends I've met on FB, and people I don't even know who just want to support me. There's a guy named Rudy Arnauts who is doing a series of videos on You Tube, called "Meeting with Mark". He is trying to get Mark Zuckerberg's attention and set up a face to face meeting with him, to discuss this problem and the lack of customer service. His videos are very eloquent and he's the only person who is going to bat for us. Even if your account hasn't been disabled, it COULD happen. I encourage everyone to check out Rudy's 3rd installment.
Then, she got mad:
As my 2 week suspension drew closer, my emotions turned to anger. This is ridiculous. How can a social networking site disable their users FOR SOCIALIZING???? How can a social networking site create "limits" on how much you can do, WITHOUT TELLING YOU WHAT THE FUCKING LIMITS ARE? How can a social networking site give you the ability to comment on EVERYFUCKINGTHING, provide you with a list of upcoming birthdays then penalize you for using the features???? Seriously!!! All they tell you is to go read their Terms of Service which only generally outlines the fact that there are "limits" and if you exceed them, they reserve the right to disable you. And because we don't pay for the site, they don't give a tiny little rat's ass about the users.Sure sounds like it.
Finally, she gets this email, which is, ummm... as we say here in the south, clear as mud:
"Hi Joanne,Well, you're too fast, but we can't say exactly HOW FAST.
Facebook has limits in place to prevent behavior that other users may find annoying or abusive. These limits restrict the rate at which you can use certain features on the site.
Unfortunately, we cannot provide you with the specific rates that have been deemed abusive.
Your account was disabled because you exceeded Facebook's limits on multiple occasions when writing on Walls, despite having been warned to slow down.
However, after reviewing your situation, we have reactivated your account, and you should now be able to log in. Please be aware that if your account is disabled again, we will not be able to reactivate it.
Once logged in, please slow down the rate at which you write on Walls. We appreciate your cooperation going forward.
Thanks for your understanding,
User Operations Facebook"
So, Jojo is back on Facebook, but not on her own terms or in her own style. She says lots of people are getting fed up:
they want to quit Facebook b/c this is happening to more and more people. And now I understand why my friends list fluctuates so much. People come and go, and now I know why.Yes, I've noticed this too.
I would have joined Jojo's support group (or maybe I did and forgot?), but I don't do a lot of Facebook. Now, I am thinking that isn't such a bad idea.
Because you know what? I type like the wind. ;)
Has Facebook-suspension happened to any of you or your friends, relatives, co-workers, neighbors, etc? What was the situation? Have any of you attempted to contact customer service, and what was your experience?