Last night my friend informed me that I couldn't call myself an "adult" (a self-respecting one, that is) as long as I continue to post Facebook photo albums. I joked, "Ha. I plan to put the birthing video of my first child on Facebook." Kidding aside, it got me thinking: Will the site continue to grow along with its initial users, or will it become like Chuck E. Cheese, a place that makes you feel foolish for going back after a certain age?
I admit, I was a little squeamish when people started posting their wedding pictures for all to see and was downright outraged when images of their newborns surfaced. But is it really so strange? And when my friends and I get to that point, will it seem more commonplace to see photos from baby showers instead of 20-something birthday bashes? As part of a generation who has redefined social networking and nearly normalized voyeurism, I wonder: can really be an adult and a full-on Facebook addict?
But even if I decide I don't want my mid-life moments on Facebook, it turns out the site might not let me go so easily. On Monday, The New York Times exposed the problem with Facebook's pesky "deactivate" button. Your account will appear to be gone, but the Facebook server still has all your information, from saved credit cards to old photos. If you reactivate, it's as if you never left, but if you don't ever want to come back, your online life is still floating around cyberspace. Since the piece ran, Facebook has been feeling the heat of user complaints — and I was happy to read that the site's founder is hard at work on a solution that will keep private info private, even after people quit the site.
I'm not going anywhere, but it's good to know I can.