Leave Facebook, Leave Your Friends Miserable
I have no intention of quitting Facebook, but I just gave it a scare: As part of my research for an upcoming TIME.com column, I clicked on the service's Deactivate Account link, just to see what would happen.
What happened included a last-ditch effort by Facebook to talk me out of saying goodbye even temporarily -- by showing me photos of myself with four other Facebook members, saying they'd (sniff) miss me, and offering to help me send them messages (presumably to explain my irrational decision).
As it happens, I don't think any of the four individuals Facebook picked would be hugely traumatized by me quitting. They're all Bay Area locals, and they're all folks I encounter quite often in person. (I've seen three out of five of them within the past five days, come to think of it.) It's the people I don't see face to face often -- and whom I haven't seen in decades in some cases -- who Facebook is particularly good for keeping up with.
If you want to tug at my heartstrings, Facebook, tell me that my high school classmates will mourn my departure -- if I was flirting with abandoning you, that might make me come back to my senses...