I haven't been on facebook for quite a while now, i tended to come off it during an intense spell of writing then go back on for a few weeks in the lull between attempts? drafts? sorties? and i am in another post draft lull and have found no desire to go back there, indeed the idea of doing so makes me feel slightly queasy which suggests to me that i have, in a sense, detoxed. As an equivalent example i haven't had a drink since New Year's Eve ( i usually take the first six months of the year off booze completely) and by now, partly because I am also concerned with what I eat and excersise more or less every day, the cravings that had me eyeing the alcohol-free beer sections in the local M and S have dissipadated, replaced with an indifference that edges into aversion. I really, really don't fancy a pint in the same way that I really, really don't fancy going back on social media. This isn't ideological in any way, my system just recognizes that it was a bad habit and now i am not routinely indulging and am healthier it's telling me not to go back there. So i won't.
Also because even though i was friends with and also "friends" with lots of very smart and sharp people and so los of clever stuff was going on, when i rejoined each time after a hiatus i had a sense of inertia, staleness. When i was in my early twenties and needed to get out of Leeds and do something else with my life, four or so years post graduation I remember sitting in the Fenton, pissed with some select gang or other of smart radical types and thinking, what am I so worried about missing out on, if i come back in a year they'll all still be sitting here saying the same stuff.
I am certainly never becoming active on Twitter ( though I had an account just to follow people i liked for a while) and i do find it useful for news and links to other more substantial content.
On some level I am bored of and by Internet 2.0 though I am not quite sure what that means. I don't think I am nostalgic for pre- or early internet days, though some of the reflections in Alex Niven's upcoming New Model Island, on the early days of blogging, has chimed in with a way my thoughts and feelings, possibly my needs and desires have been tending for a while. I think a return to blogging, precisely because it has fallen into desuetude, precisely because no-one now is really listening or reading, appeals. What was always nice about it was partly the a-sociallity, you wrote something and then had no idea who had read it, or what anyone thought and nor did you have to care particularly. It was/is both public and private but somehow it could command an intimacy, an invisible meeting of minds, lives, semi or totally anonymously. what you wrote was out there somehow working away in the world and you never knew how. You had connected but without any of the burdens of sociality, without the need for an exhange.
It's that particular mode of non-exchange, the lack of reaction, the idea of something going quietly out there, the message in a bottle, a misdirected letter, sender unknown that I like. a certain disrtance is needed for people to really meet, a certain hiddenness needed before you can really speak.