After a long time of romanticizing with the idea of leading the life of a digital saint, on December 5th, 2019, I took an impulsive leap and got myself out of one of Mark Zuckerberg’s “The Pit” platforms. Much like in the Dark Knight Rises movie, these pits offer its “prisoners” escape and I took the leap, much like how the boy who escaped did, without the rope.
I would like to think we all have, at least once, thought of getting off all the social media and go complete S-level ninja on our digital footprint. I researched on it. I read a lot of articles that asked us to be aware of the personal data we are permitting other sites/applications to access. And over one weekend, I got really excited about creating my own platform where I don’t store any information about anyone and let them freely interact and share knowledge (which I do realize now, how terribly would have failed). Came across a bunch of concepts and terms — digital suicide being the prominent one. And I promise you, it isn’t as lovely as it sounds.
Anyway, I did what I thought I had to do. And much like any true Marvel fan (specifically the MCU bit; never cared enough to get to the comics), I knew that the hardest choices require the strongest wills.
I could lie about how I planned the thing through, and I am so happy now that I have done it. But since I clearly don’t intend to lie, I will admit it was an impulsive decision, and I now think maybe I wasn’t ready.
I was a moderately active Instagram user. Like 5 to 6 hours of daily average usage after a standard 9 hours job and a pretty updated binged-that-popular-show-last-night-on-Netflix life.
I updated my stories like a normal person with memes that I liked, beautiful snaps of places I visited with captions and hashtags that a handful of my friends and I thought were cool, photogenic food items that I don’t remember the taste of and occasionally a story post about the current social cause. So yeah, pretty normal — for the narcissist millennial, I am.
Once I deleted the account, something changed in me. I was becoming a self-righteous prick. I argued with people who were still on their Instagrams, urged them to see the error in their ways. I kept bringing up the fact that I was no longer on Instagram and quoted lousy facts about data from Netflix’s The Great Hack during lunch breaks.
It was all good until it hit me — I have *permanently* deleted all my semi-naked selfies (actually just one) and fake-candids on Thailand beaches. No one is going to know that I read Murakami last winter when I went home. No stranger is going to stalk my account and see that I was ramp walking in a make-believe corporate fashion show. I am anxious. Have I made a mistake? I have made a mistake. I should have just deactivated that bloody thing…
To Be Continued (hopefully)
Special thanks to Agampreet Kaur for reading this draft and providing her valuable inputs to it… on call… at 3 am… on a Friday.❤
Edit: I followed it up with a not-so-liked Part 2.