For almost six hours last Monday voices were silenced as a handful of Facebook-owned social media platforms vanished into cyberspace.
The reprieve was interesting in that Facebook users scrambled to reset passwords, check devices for technical issues and pace the desolate social network floor.
Despite the anxiety surrounding the unforeseen circumstances the brief stay of silence was implausible but somewhat liberating.
Within a matter of seconds haters lost their voice; debate ceased without a winner and there was nary a theory shared about Covid-19.
The reason given for blacked-out computer screens was allegedly ‘an update to Facebook’s routers that coordinate network traffic went wrong, sending a wave of disruptions rippling through its systems. As a result, all things Facebook were effectively shut down, worldwide.’
To simplify it: Facebook Inc is an American multinational technology company based in California and its owners can pretty much shut down on a whim.
Don’t be mistaken, huge dollars are invested in Facebook through advertising, links etc, so it’s unlikely closure would be permanent.
For the day-to-day user Facebook provides a platform to keep in touch, stay connected to home and communities and share photos, philosophies and incidental information socially.
As with anything Facebook is vulnerable to exploitation in taking advantage of unfiltered information, at times robbing users of their identity and spreading malicious untruths as well as practical information.
Without question the reality is information you share with your online ‘Friends’ can be viewed by users worldwide. As of 2021 a total of 2.85 billion people of various ages were Facebook users.
Facebook is accused of unconscionably preying on the vulnerability of youths. True or otherwise red flags rise when blame is part of a factor.
Parental control is key in youth’s internet usage but mom and dad don’t always have time to monitor their child’s online activity, nor can already busy teachers in our schools.
Youths might turn to video games simply as a respite from this confusing time in their lives. The motivation in regards to adults and social media isn’t a whole lot different.
Regardless, the logistics of Facebook are straightforward: people use it to vent, share and more than likely employ it as a distraction to the broken world in which we live.
Heather Moore is editor of The Eastern Graphic. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org