The Facebook Apocalypse: Step Back from the Ledge

How I learned to stop worrying about the latest algorithm change by Facebook, and come to love the Newsfeed.

The Facebook Apocalypse: Step Back from the Ledge
Ever since Facebook unveiled a new mission statement last summer, “Bring the world closer together,” Facebook has had many of us so-called experts confused and nervous as things change behind the scenes.
The Facebook Apocalypse: Step Back from the Ledge
Ever since Facebook unveiled a new mission statement last summer, “Bring the world closer together,” Facebook has had many of us so-called experts confused and nervous as things change behind the scenes.

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One job an editor does for their magazine is create a style that presents the magazine as it wishes to be seen. For example, consider the differences between The New Yorker and Mad Magazine. Both have cartoons. Both can be political, topical and satirical. Both make strong statements on culture.

But there is no way you would ever confuse the two.

The New Yorker is classy, high-brow, and well composed. Mad is gross, low-brow, and goofy. But despite differences, each magazine is carefully designed. They have carefully crafted their image over time by selecting content that appeals to their sensibilities, different though they may be.

That’s what the Newsfeed is supposed to do for Facebook.

Facebook wants to be known for a certain style. And in a bizarre, self-aware moment, Zuckerberg has given us a look at how they want to see themselves and just how short of that mark they have fallen.

“We feel a responsibility to make sure our services aren’t just fun to use, but also good for people’s well-being,” noted Zuckerberg. Quite an admission. To spell out the subtext, he is acknowledging their services aren’t fun and they are not good for people’s well-being.

They used to be.

They want to be.

But Facebook is not currently fun and good. Can we really disagree?

At Christmas each year, the photo team at Crossroads Community Church in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, hosts free family portrait photos during our Christmas production. To make it easier for people to get their digital photo, we started uploading them to Facebook.

This Christmas, as I explained the process to families in line, I frequently heard a theme repeated time and time again, something I hadn’t heard before:

“Oh, Facebook? I don’t use that. It just stresses me out.”

“Facebook? That’s from the devil.”

“Ugh … I don’t have Facebook. It’s no good.”

Think about everyone you go to church with … Did anyone kick off 2018 with a “Facebook fast?” Has anyone on your team ever said to you that you won’t be able to reach them on Facebook, because they need to disconnect for a while? Have you ever had to convince a ministry partner of the good in Facebook, because they see it as an evil in the world?

I’m sure you have.

Facebook has been listening.

They know what we think of them. It’s time for a change.

More About Adrian Gates
Adrian Gates is the Media Director for Crossroads Community Church in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. In his 16 years as a media professional, Adrian has served many different roles, including music producer, web master, videographer, consultant, social media “expert,” sound guy, lighting guy, stage hand, and roadie. His clients have included some of the largest tech companies in the world, New England churches looking to modernize, and dedicated weekend warriors. Adrian is a graduate of the New England Institute of Art and Communications.
Get in Touch:    More by Adrian Gates

Latest Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, March-April 2018
The March-April 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about how to prepare, prevent and respond to church violence, a look into what church management software can do for your church community, and a piece on how a once popular nightclub venue was transitioned to become Shoreline Church's new home.

Article Topics

Visual Arts · Multi-media · Team Management · Leadership · Spiritual Health · Team Development · Facebook · Groups · Media · Ministry · Newsfeed · Partner · All Topics

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