This introvert wonders – Do you Like Facebook?

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This introvert would like to hear from other introverts regarding your experiences with Facebook.

As a general rule, I’ve been avoiding using Facebook (apart from a fleeting interest as a software developer). I am an intensely private person, and since I have no interest in telling anyone about what I get up to on the weekend, I pretty much have nothing to write about. I also have no desire to build and show off a score of 20,000 friends. I’m quite happy and proud of being a loner, thank you very much.

But recently I’ve been thinking about getting on the Facebook bandwagon to support my Web-based business. Specifically, I’ve been interested in using it as an outlet for creative writing. If I wrote a purely fictional story, I believe I could maintain the writing output and at the same time build an ongoing audience that I can market my products directly to.

To get the ball rolling, I would have to start “friending” random people on Facebook. This is the part that, as an Introvert, seems rather counter intuitive to me. I know the Internet is a very different place to the real world, but I can’t help feeling that this is not unlike people randomly knocking on your door, or cold calling on the telephone.

That said, I know that this is the only way to build an audience of people that I have no contact with in
the real world.

I’m interested to hear about the experience of other introverts using Facebook for both business and actual
social contact.

Photo credit: birgerking

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34 Comments

  1. I’d suggest that you create a “fan page” for your writing. This is separate from your personal profile, so you can keep your personal info out of it as much as you like. People can “like” your writing fan page, and receive whatever updates you post to it, without needing to be your personal “friends.”

    To do so, login to Facebook, scroll all the way to the bottom, and click Create a Page. Follow the prompts from there; it’s pretty simple.
    Aaron B.´s last post ..Our Mother of Perpetual Help

  2. I’d agree with Aaron – the “fan page” is much more suited to your interest than a profile page. But probably what you *really* want to do is start a blog (they’re free if you use blogger or wordpress or livejournal, etc) and use the fan page to help publicize it.

    As for whether I, as an introvert, like Facebook? Yes, I do. I like social networks, especially for their ability to let me keep in touch with friends without taxing my somewhat limited social energy. I like that I can “like” various businesses, blogs, advocacy groups and keep up with the news they share in addition to seeing the various articles, videos and status updates that my friends share. It’s become a useful tool for me.

    I also think social networks are, or can be, an equalizer for introverts in the social arena.

  3. I agree with Aaron that a fan page is what you want on Facebook. But I think the better tool for what you’re trying to do is Twitter. It’s much easier to search Twitter for people who have the same interests as you. And I think it’s much easier to approach complete strangers on Twitter than on Facebook. It’s basically expected. And you don’t have to follow everyone back if you don’t want to.

    I follow more than 500 people on Twitter, and I’m starting to use it to build a business. But I use Facebook only for close friends and family. I don’t pay much attention to the friend count — I’ve got about 50 and that number is pretty steady.

  4. I say create a fan page. I use Facebook quite often in my personal life because it is a forum in which I can control who sees what. I also use it for business purposes with a very active fan page that I keep fairly anonymous. I find Facebook is a better tool than Twitter because it allows you so much privacy control as well as allows you to filter who sees what.
    An Anonymous INFJ´s last post ..Longing to Be Known

  5. Since you’ve identified your mission as “supporting your web based business,” a Facebook fan page makes the most sense.

    I’m an introvert, and I’ve been using Facebook for years– more recently got into twitter. Both are decent vehicles for business promotion, although they tend to work marginally better when you have a tangible “product” to offer, as opposed to general services. Service providers can get around this by creating some kind of “package deal” that’s very specific, for their Facebook/twitter followers.

    As for having to “cold call” random strangers… or friend them… I never did. Instead, join some groups that relate to your field and become an active community member. When someone interacts with you, say “Wow, I really liked your comment, let’s connect.” That way your connections are formed across a common bridge, AND you’re forming connections only with those who have already shown an interest in what you had to say….
    Peter´s last post ..HSPs, Authenticity, Work… and Negative Perceptions of Money

  6. Whoa & Wow!!! I not sure if this was directed to me because I did previous recommended a FACEBBOK GROUP FOR INTROVERTED INDIVIDUALS. I was not injecting that Introvert Zone User’s to get a Facebook. I was saying it would be NICE to have a FACEBOOK GROUP, or some other type of website where [we] introversion could connected. Additionally, even though, I am a Facebook user doesn’t mean I am a fan because I AM NOT. I am one-of-a-kind and so are my thoughts. Therefore, mostly all postes are not commented on or liked because not many understand my introverted perspective. In which makes me feel more different than I really am. That’s why I suggested a website support group for individuals like myself ; hoping we could connect and help one another.

  7. There’s some great advice here regarding the fan page and a blog. Definitely don’t go friending random people. You could make yourself very unpopular that way. Instead find pages about things you’re interested in and you like to write about and first show yourself to be an interested and intelligent member before you go advertising your page. Start a blog and do the same thing on others’ similar blogs. Don’t just advertise: make yourself a part of the community, which is much more easy for introverts online than offline (especially those of us who are writers).
    I, incidentally, love Facebook. I get to see what people I don’t get to see often are doing and interact with those I want to interact with and not with those I don’t want to. People know what kind of person I am by the kinds of things I write about on Facebook, and I don’t write about anything I don’t want my friends and family to know.
    The thing about Facebook is that for the most part it does what *you* tell it to do. It doesn’t share any information you haven’t given it to share.

    • I can’t help but wonder when I read some of these comments… do some of you think that we have some sort of condition?! That being an introvert is something we should work ourselves out of? I absolutely do not wish to be “stimulated” or “motivated” by anyone… Don’t change who you are… learn to enjoy it Peace

  8. Hi. I find Facebook useful for keep in touch with people that I don’t or can’t see and talk to every day or every week. – With Facebook they can know how I’m going and post me a message if they’re curious about catching up or just wanting to drop me a line.
    As an introvert I find it hard to talk for long periods on the phone, but the on / off chatting or posting comments on FB allows me a freedom of communication which keep me connected to the friends I do have. And I decide when to log in so I don’t feel pressured about checking my updates constantly, like checking your mobile phone every 10 minutes for a message… that gets old and pathetic really quickly.
    I’m not one of those people that will go out looking for friends on FB, nor will I just add a friend on a whim if I don’t know them, which is one of the features I like about FB; you decide who to add as a friend and you decide how much information to give out. I’m very private too and don’t share much about my personal life. But when I do go out I find FB is a good medium for sharing photos of the event which I haven’t taken.
    Also I love to travel, I’ve met some amazing people from around the world (and you always meet more people if you travel alone). And the best way to keep in touch with them is FB.
    So I say yes, join up and judge for yourself how much you will nor won’t use it.

  9. Pretty much all ideas here are the same. Creating a Facebook fan page is the top most advice for me. Joining Facebook does not necessarily mean you have to tell every single detail, big or small, about yourself. You can have one just for the sake of getting in touch with your friends, relatives and of course, the marketing thingy.

  10. Am I the only one here who doesn’t like Facebook? I don’t like Facebook because whenever I scroll down the news feed then I’m always greeted with pictures that my friends have been tagged while they’re out partying, having a good time, and I’m reminded that I’m at home, on my own. I’ve also noticed the amount of profile pictures of people hanging out with their mates at clubs and parties, while my profile picture is of me, just me, in my bedroom.
    I also hate the way it’s practically destroyed communication. I’ve been asked out about 3 times over Facebook and I’ve said no to all of them because;
    a) I don’t really like them in that way
    and b) if you want to go out with me then you should ask me in person, not type it into a message. I’ve also had someone apologize to me over Facebook about something that I was really upset about. You should apologize to me in person, not behind a computer screen!
    As for the friend thing, I only accept people who’ve I’ve had contact with in real life because why do I want to go on a social network website to be ‘friends’ with people who I don’t even know just so that I have a high friend count? I don’t care how many friends I have on Facebook, I know everyone on my friends list. It’s better to be safe than sorry that’s what I always say.

    • I am with you. I am not on Facebook and never will be. No need for it. I don’t want other people knowing every boring detail of my life! I’m sure all the extroverts out there would never understand that!

    • Agreed. I feel Facebook is more suited for extroverts. When i was younger, i got into Facebook because it was the trend to do so. But due to being an introvert, I had mostly nothing exciting to post in it. And i regret it, and i tend to feel certain fear in going into the website.
      Now, Facebook is used in my school to send out notices about classes, events and teachers that wants to be “friend” with you. Due to these reasons, i need to be in it, socialise and friendly to people i may don’t even know that well. And the socialising part still freaks me out.

  11. I love it. You can change the settings and clear your news feed entirely if it bothers you to read about the others. Photos can be untagged and nobody can force you to do anything there.

    I use it as a tool to stay in touch with my family from time to time without having to call them all the time or visit to often. The same is with the friends that I like.
    Ana @ Como Hacer Ensayos´s last post ..Cómo Hacer Un Ensayo – Cómo Se Hace Un Ensayo

  12. The thing I don’t like about facebook is that pressure you “have to” add everyone who has many mutual friends with you. I hate that. And also I don’t feel like adding evan people that I do personally know (for example from high school and work) but I’m not close too. I don’t see a point in sharing your thoughts, pictures and personal info with aquantancies. I feel so revealed and I don’t like it.

  13. There are times I feel excited to open my FB. There are times I dread opening it. Maybe it’s because of my personality where sometimes I feel like talking to people and sometimes I’d rather be alone doing what I want. I treat FB as a social place that I can’t stand to use for a long time like I can’t stand being with people for a period of time.

  14. I have often been tempted to delete my account but decide against it. I mainly use it to keep in touch with relatives. And some of my closest friends don’t have accounts or I am not fb friends with. Speaking of friending… I think there may be only a handful out of 50 some on there that I have actually sent the request. That’s the introvert in me showing. By the time I feel comfortable enough to consider someone my true friend, they probably have already friended me or it is irrelevant. As in life, acquaintances don’t do much for me. Alas, networking for a job search is a major endeavor. In that way, facebook and linkedin can be very helpful to an introvert who likes to keep acquaintances at arm’s length.

  15. I don’t like facebook because i was addicted to playing games… it’s also so stressful to upload some of my recent pics in there just to let other people know that I was really having a lot of fun every weekend going to different places. I also hate the fact that people on fb are trying to stalk you, annoy you or make you feel bad about something. It’s also nonsense to keep in touch with people on fb. I rather want to spend time with them for real than spending time on fb. What else? no privacy….

  16. I guess I am the only one here who is so extremely introverted that I hate and have no use for facebook. And yet I activate and deactivate on a regular basis. I activate because I feel like the world revolves around facebook and I might as well be there to see where the rest of the world is acting out. And then I am there and I am so totally non-active, I do not post, I do not chat, I have no comments to make and I am insulted because it is so complicated to figure out what is your profile and opposed to your wall and what is the difference between a comment and a chat. And I have to deactivate and get away from this totally confusing environment. I do not understand at all why people say they must be on facebook so they can keep in touch with certain people. Excuse me, but whatever happened to email, the telephone, a letter and in person contact. Every comment or activity that takes place comes directly into my email inbox. Why go through the middle man at facebook? Why not just email me directly? I have a total of 7 friends. One makes a comment on facebook and it comes to my email and I am to go to facebook to see the comment and then comment back and my comment back will then go to the email of the one I am commenting back to. It is all so redundant. I am told that I should just be there so that I can eavesdrop on people and read their conversations, etc. but I have yet to find out anything or be interested in anything whatsoever than anybody else is doing or saying. I find no use whatsoever for facebook. Except that it is where one sixth of the population is every night chatting it up. And now having written all this I will go and deactivate once again before the night is up.

  17. I am an introvert and absolutely hate facebook. it is antisocial and the way people scream for attention is sickening. I have a few close friends and that is all I need. The mere mention of Facebook in public, on TV makes me sick. I should not have been born in this time period. Thank god there are others out there my age with the sense to stay away from Facebook. it is an awful website and responsible for so many problems in the world today.

  18. Facebook shows a phenomenon that can be seen elsewhere as well (casting shows, people using cell phones in public transportation,…): The world seems crowded with people desperately seeking attention (craving for narcissistic supply). Everybody wants his fame and 15 minutes are certainly not enough. I don’t know whether facebook is mainly an “extrovert thing”, it certainly is useful for certain purposes.

    I think those attention-whoring tendencies have existed before, but have now become more and more obvious and present in daily life through the “new” media and technology. For me as an introvert this is quite annoying and often makes me think “STFU, will you?” One thing’s for sure: the current development is “one way only”: it’s getting louder…

  19. Regardless if you are introverted or not, I don’t understand people using facebook as a tool for communication. There is a much better, simpler, more private method for online communcation and that is email. To have to sit there and search out friends and manage who see what information and manage privacy settings is absolute nonsense and a waste of time. If someone is my friend and they want to communicate online, then I will speak to them one-on-one through email. As most introverts will agree, we don’t want to be talking to a group on facebook who may or may not be interested in the subject matter. We prefer one to one conversations that come about as a result of a commonality between the two of us.

  20. For myself Facebook is the epitome of superficial communication – like reading the jacket of a DVD or book and presuming to understand the content completely as a result. What makes it worse is it’s no longer optional, nor is it acceptable to feel unhappy about that. I am supposed to be happy there is yet another pigeonhole I must attempt to squeeze into.

    A person has to frequently post in a manner acceptable to extroverts, using a brand, even for job searches today! If I happen to be the kind of person who prefers privacy, and doesn’t get thrilled by updating the world with how many sheets of toilet paper I use daily, then I am also subject to flames from inconsiderate people trying to convert me to Facebook irrespective of my preferences.

    It’s not about whether social media is right or wrong IMO, it’s about the idea I must publicly publicize my personal life online. Really, isn’t there enough boring garbage on the net without me adding my flotsam?

    (Sigh). Obviously I need remedial education in narcissism to cope better.

  21. Something I do not like about facebook is the pressure to not only comment on posts, but to post more often. I have been subtly “accused” of “lurking” if I do not, especially if it is in a closed group such as a community forum where it shows if you have seen the post. I have even gone so far as to say something like “just because I don’t comment it doesn’t mean I’m not listening.” And the latest comment I made, “maybe we should have a “lurk” button as well as a “like” button.” Otherwise, I do appreciate the ability to have time to compose my thoughts through writing.

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