View from the Pines: 2022 Intentions – eliminate Facebook from my life


By JIM COLEMAN, Special to The Paper

It’s time for RESOLUTIONS. I no longer make New Year’s resolutions. I have found it to be an exercise in futility. I was quite successful, however, in 2021 when I resolved to give up dieting. I believe that’s the first time I have ever successfully abided by a New Year’s Resolution in my life. If you have seen me lately, you can vouch for my success in 2021. I now make New Year’s Intentions. I trust that they will be more successful than resolutions.

In all seriousness, you have heard me rant about this before, so now I’ve decided to take action. My New Year’s Intention for 2022 is to extricate FACEBOOK from my life. Because of my real job (some of you will be shocked to find out that “published columnist” is not how I maintain my lifestyle). I am required to maintain some level of presence in the social media world. Unfortunately, with all its ills, it has become an integral part of doing business. That’s why I hired a PR firm and an under 30-year-old sales person to handle as much of the company’s presence as possible.

You may have noticed some changes in your Facebook account in the past year or so, as I did. They are coming slowly, which is by design as to not draw your attention to the changes. For instance, I noticed that I was constantly seeing posts from people with whom I’m remotely acquainted, but my lifelong close friends were disappearing from my feed. So, I decided to purge my account by “unfriending” (such a stupid word) about 300 people in hopes that the ones I care about would rise to the forefront.   WRONG!!!  That didn’t work. 

 I have even more people appearing as suggestions of people I “might” want to know, and my real friends are still floundering somewhere in cyberspace. What did happen is I started getting more ads in the place of the people I purged. I even hate the words that we use to explain this process.  It sounds like we have swapped places with the Almighty and we are now sitting at the pearly gates and our job is to separate the sheep from the goats. That’s just Sick.

Therein lies my real issue with social media. When you combine the rapid advances in technology with the Pandemic, what you get is a generation and a half of people who have absolutely no social skills, they are empowered by their anonymity, they are convinced that people actually care about what they think, and they are focused on a set of contrived values that have nothing to do with real life. The result is that there is so much misinformation that nobody knows what the truth is anymore, users now have the ability to bully and truly hurt others without having to bear any of the responsibility and they’ve developed an “inward” focus themselves at the peril of all other human contact.

It has taken a while but here are my conclusions:

Your self-worth and your value to people who truly care about you cannot be measured by “LIKES”.

It is immoral to mistreat others and then hide behind the anonymity of a screen name.

In the real world, NOBODY gives a &^%$ what you think.

Nobody has ever convinced anybody of anything of any importance with a FACEBOOK post.

I’m tired of being eavesdropped upon, listened to, and violated by every electronic device that Big Brother has convinced me that I need.

I’m tired of my life being dissected into algorithms for the purpose of monetizing my behavior for the enhancement of shareholder value.

I’m disgusted to find out that the people who are the closest to me and that I care about the most  have a social media feed that is completely different from mine.  We are all being manipulated and fed only information that has been deemed appropriate for our behavior even within the same house.

Here what’s really disgusting. The only way for me to make any kind of an impact, is to post this on FACEBOOK.


Jim Coleman is twice retired as a financial advisor and flight attendant. A theatre geek, musician, arts administrator and preservationist, he lived a relatively obscure life until he crossed paths with Corby Winters. Jim chose Newnan as his new forever home five years ago and is dedicated to making our community the best it can be.

1 comment

  1. Eleanor Perkinson 10 January, 2022 at 11:18 Reply
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    Nobody could have ever summed FB up like that but you. That’s why I post very little but love to hear from old friends. I hope you continue to communicate with me somehow. Fyi I was just recently diagnosed with Early stage Parkinsons

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