FACEBOOK; Useful, or Just a Waste of Time?

April 25, 2008
By Aarati Akkapeddi, Blauvelt, NY

FACEBOOK; Useful, or Just a Waste of Time?

With the painful era of Myspace long dead and gone, a new epidemic has taken a foothold in our society: Facebook.
Each day countless hours are wasted away rummaging through comments or checking the notice board in the hope of receiving a new friend request. As a victim of this monster myself, I can say the addicting online “yearbook” is not only time-consuming, but also quite overrated. Originally a convenient means of keeping in touch with relatives, conversing with camp friends, or keeping updated on school events, Facebook is now polluted with thousands of nonsensical applications and uninteresting cell-phone photos. Among the application requests I’ve received are “What color nail-polish is right for you,” “What weird way will you die,” and better yet, “Who were you in a past life?” Yes, because an online quiz can really unlock the spiritual world.

Facebook is also known for its ability to act as an online photo album, where friends and family can view vacation photos and leave little comments, but even that use seems to get abused. I can’t count how many people fill up five whole albums with pictures of different facial expressions. Not only do people feel the need to fill albums with cell-phone pictures of their face, but also to take as many pictures as they can of daily life. It’s as if they put up 100 pictures of themselves and their friends laughing while walking down the street just to show everyone that they actually have friends. Truthfully, nobody really cares for those albums, which just take up space in the Newsfeed.

The idea of applications first came to Facebook in the form of Graffiti, a harmless sketchpad, but it soon turned into a massive number of pointless and irritating quizzes. Not only do these quizzes take up time, but also space. My notice board is filled with exactly 680 requests, making it impossible to find, if existing, any important notifications that lie buried underneath. Some people fall for this foolish ploy and add a large number of these applications, making their profiles extremely hard to navigate. Sometimes, I’ll try to respond to a nice comment but can’t even find the other person’s Wall! And besides, do you think anyone really wants to know what bollywood actress that person is or how Irish they are? Through applications, Facebook has become no better than the graphics-littered-Myspace we all know and hate.
While all this is true, people may still wonder whether there is an alternative to Facebook, a way to keep in touch with their friends and to keep updated on school events. Well there most definitely is. Keeping in touch is simple through e-mail, or faster still, instant messaging and if you have a Mac, you can even Video Chat! Also, you can keep updated on school clubs and events through e-mail, checking the school website, or just simply paying attention to the flyers you get every meeting. Flickr or any other site devoted to photo-sharing is the best way to post up pictures and leave comments without bothering anyone else. So as you can see, Facebook does not have to kill all your time because there is another way to communicate, post up pictures, and keep updated on events.

Similar Articles


This article has 4 comments.

on Mar. 12 2011 at 2:44 pm
redpanda26 SILVER, Chevy Chase, Maryland
5 articles 5 photos 51 comments
This is great! It's well-written and honest. Loveeeee it!

on Jan. 27 2011 at 9:48 pm
silence-is-loud GOLD, Chicago, Illinois
10 articles 0 photos 135 comments

Favorite Quote:

I totallyyy get your point. My favorite part of the article was when you said "It’s as if they put up 100 pictures of themselves and their friends laughing while walking down the street just to show everyone that they actually have friends." which is totally true... 5 stars for truth. :)

on Jan. 13 2009 at 5:13 am
This is a very well articulated article and I completely agree with your argument: in terms of how Facebook is used in America. I have recently been studying Middle Eastern civil rights (or rather the lack thereof) and the government censors many aspects of their lives, including the internet. Facebook has been banned in most Middle Eastern countries, but through illegal internet proxy servers, it is still accessible. Because these citizens are unsupportive of the corrupted government, they are retaliating by accessing Facebook anyway. This may not seem like an accomplishment for any average American, but accessing Facebook is punishable by death in the Middle East. However, those that are retaliating have started Facebook groups that promote Middle Eastern civil rights. Through Facebook, these people are taking the first steps toward freedom. I still don't agree that any networking site is important enough to rule one's life, I am a true believer that they are essential to oppressed people. Without things like Facebook, people like those in the Middle East would be unable to form communities, therefore making them unable to fight for their rights. If you're really into researching the effects of social networking sites, you should definitely Google censorship in the Middle East. It's actually quite interesting.

thecritic said...
on Aug. 12 2008 at 9:14 pm
I thought this article was really well written and I agreed with a majority of what you said. Facebook has become far too much like myspace, however, I still find it useful. I post my work on the "notes" application... comment on friends photos... and keep in touch through messaging. It doesn't necessarily HAVE to be a complete waste of time.

Good article though.


MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!