FB Goes Offline This Week, Experts Warn We Should Be Logging Out Too

FB Goes Offline This Week, Experts Warn We Should Be Logging Out Too

  • This week's social media outage has got one expert concerned about our increasing dependence on the apps
  • One psychiatrist suggests that the addiction to social media is rooted in our fear of missing out
  • Briefly News shares some ways we can all better manage our time on social media platforms

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Facebook's social networking tools shut down on Monday for what many people felt was an immeasurable amount of time.

The 6-hour shut down, although relatively short, revealed some troubling realities about just how reliant human beings are on these social media apps. One family and relationship expert, Ian Kerner says people have been using the apps "in different ways to distract ourselves, to escape, to connect, to cope with anxiety and stress."

Facebook, Shut down, social media, concern, dependence
This week's social media outage has got one expert concerned about our increasing dependence on the apps. Image: Getty
Source: Getty Images

Unfortunately, it is the fear of missing out or "FOMO" which drives these anxieties. Speaking with CNN, Kerner explains that people are social beings and want to feel connected.

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For many of us, social media has created a sort of pseudo-connectivity that often leads us to feel distracted and disorientated in the real world.

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Facebook outage actually a major relief

Strangely enough, the outage seems to have given people a sense of relief and experts are saying we should take more of these breaks from our devices. Once people understood that there was nothing to keep up with or miss out on, it seems a sense of calm took over.

"Once people realized, 'oh, these networks are almost all down,' there was this bizarre, but very clear sense of relief. The feeling was 'I don't have anything I have to keep up with, "Kerner says.

He's also suggested people take more of these scheduled breaks from these social media sites. HelpGuide had some great suggestions on how we can all manage our screen time a bit better:

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This includes turning off your phone at certain times of the day, disabling social media notifications and setting aside time each week to interact offline with friends and family.

“Go to church”: SA imagines a world without internet following Facebook outage

In related news, Briefly News previously reported that in the wake of the social media outage experienced by many social media users all over the world, South Africans share their options should it happen permanently.

Scores of locals prefer to go to church and some people argue that the mobile phones they use cannot shut down and they can still access the social networking sites. Briefly News posted a short quiz on Facebook, asking the readers what they could do if Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram could crash permanently.

We select a few reactions from the question as posted to the online community. Briefly News wrote:

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“What would you do if all social media platforms shut down permanently?”

Check out some of the reactions below:

@Thandi Tobias-Poloko said:

“Go to church.”

@Absdalom Maoneka said:

“We will stick to alcohol then at least it doesn't disappoint, it gives so much happiness, makes you speak good English and you will be promising people jobs.”

@Candy Mminele said:

“We will live peacefully like before they were introduced.”

@Lillian Sonia Lilly said:

“Maybe my mind Will start thinking sane and clean phela right now I can't use my brain. I am depending on social media too much.”

@Kamohelo Nkobo said:

“I still have my 3310 Nokia nothing shuts down there.”

@Lindile Ndamase said:

“Sit down with my gang and do face to face and do what's new mzala.”

@Stella Banda said:

“Will just restart my handset and everything will go back to normal.”

@Matsebo Nollz said:

“We will suffer very much because some of us do many things we do through social media.”

Source: Briefly News

Naomi Kobbie avatar

Naomi Kobbie Naomi is an entertainment writer with 3 years experience in the world of radio and print media. She is a language graduate from the University of Pretoria (2020) and has worked for Briefly News since 2021. Naomi has a passion for the written word, whether through her work as a journalist or as a soulful singer. "When I'm not working, I spend my time producing music, travelling or snuggling up with a good movie and some butter popcorn."