Cory and Tommy took the big step of deactivating Facebook, but I’m just demoting it a bit. I removed all my personal information and turned off the majority of notifications. My wall and comments have also been disabled. I left pictures up, but will not be posting more on Facebook. I have configured my blog to post a “New blog post” teaser on my wall which people can click through if they care. I removed the Status Update feed from Google Reader and uninstalled the Facebook app off my phone.
I prefer my web presence to be somewhere I have more control of my personal data. I highly doubt I’ll miss it since I never particularly liked it to begin with. Let our blogs live on.
I stay pretty tuned in to the activity on our little blogosphere and for the past 6 months I’ve noticed a significant downward trend in the number of posts and comments coming through Google Reader. Is this slow down a direct result in everyone’s increased use of Facebook? My hypothesis is that people who were using blogs to casually post quick tidbits about life have migrated to Facebook and abandoned their individual blogs.
I think a big part of this migration is that the barrier to posting is very low on Facebook and the audience is quick to reach. I don’t mind seeing what people did last night or checking out some of their photos, but I don’t expect to have any deep discussions on Facebook. There’s little incentive for people to post anything too meaningful because as soon it drops off the front page of everyone’s News Feed it is essentially lost forever. Posts and comments on a blog are much more permanent and easily retrieved. I could easily find a blog post from last year, but I don’t think I’d be able to find a Status Update from last year. Why invest time in creating content that might as well be deleted after it reaches an age of one week?
Of the 18 or so blogs on my Blogroll, I’d say only 5 or 6 could be considered active. All the people who’s blogs are dead are active on Facebook. That seems like fairly good evidence that Facebook killed the casual blog. Not good or bad, it just is what it is.