Two things have happened, and I don't know what to do about them. Maybe you can help.
But let's back up for a second. The reason I started to write about music in Portland was to satisfy a certain itch for snarky writing, let's be real for a second, I mean no matter how much I say it's about Y'ALL, it's also about me because I'm a selfish person who enjoys ME, but also: balance in all things.
But it was also about bringing our music community together and drawing in others who may or may not be aware that music even exists in the town. The goals were twofold: write regularly in a way that I enjoy and that bends to the will of no man, and also spotlight all of you artists types who are working so hard, and who nobody is hearing.
Then things got a little wild around town. We all started fighting on the information superhighway, people blackballed venues and each other, and bands, and we shamed people, and we pointed fingers and mocked and we took down a couple of bullies and abusers and we made fun of the Phoenix, and we made fun of white guys from Maine who have dreadlocks and are in reggae bands (never backing down from that, sorry) and it was all in good... uh, fun?
Was that fun? I feel like everyone fought a lot in the past year. And fighting rarely leaves you feeling good unless you've had a chance to hug it out and make up.
It just seems like there was one common denominator in all of that stuff: Facebook.
That's where it all went down. And the more time we spent on Facebook calling each other out, the worse we felt. The less we spent time together. The more jealous of each other we got. The more fractured we became. I mean that's how I see it, anyway.
Here's the thing about call out culture and Facebook. Facebook is a great place to go for telling your story, for letting people know what terrible people did to you. Yes. 100%. And people do shitty things to each other CONSTANTLY. Constant rape, assault, racism both explicit and implicit, body shaming, gender discrimination, trans hate, LGBT abuse and hate, friends just being straight up old school mean to each other for reasons NOT based on fear but just based on life stuff, I mean and on and on and on forever and ever, amen. I don't know that humans will ever really change. The need to feel dominant and hurt things is endemic to our nature. I think you can live consciously and be aware of that and manage it in a way that is productive, but with the way capitalism is going, pushing us into a frenzy of terror, greed and isolation, there will have to be a great undoing before we ever get there as a human race.
So anyway, back to "the thing." Without FB, without a place on the internet to go and talk publicly, we would have to go and seek out time with a family member, friend, lover, counselor or other human being to talk it out. You'd need to find other ways to tell your story publicly that have more barriers to entry and require more community support. And while FB makes it easier to reach out, it also strips the process of telling your story of that one crucial component:
Real, live, human support. Kindness. Empathy. Care. Love. Touch. Eye contact. Someone there by your side reminding you that you are good, and important, and needed, and walking through this world in a way that has an impact. Something REAL, and tactile, and enriching.
Because after you tell your story on FB, you're just still there, alone in your house or whatever. Or probably at work if we're all being honest. You're left with the feelings and though the likes come rolling in, when they're done, what are you left with?
A bunch of blue fucking thumbs and nobody who actually wants to talk to you about what you went through. And, you know, honestly, a bunch of people who blue thumbed you but are then going and gossiping about you behind your back, judging, whispering, sometimes even laughing and name calling. You're really no better off, other than a fleeting sense of self-aggrandizement followed by the empty hole of loneliness. It fucking sucks.
Now, as you know, I get all my event info from FB events, and part of the requirement to do that was to troll through the 'book and find events. And I exposed myself to all that vitriol and bullshit and even got involved in it at certain times, despite my better judgment. People even gave me a hard fucking time on fb every so often, which really irritates me because, like, just don't read my shit, man. Just go away. Don't come to the party if you don't like the music or the people.
Get to the point, right, right, I KNOW, shut up. Well, ok, so this past week unless you've been living in a cave (#lifegoals), you heard about the Cambridge Analytica shit. I'm not going to get into it other than to point out that it's basically the sleaziest, most fucked up, narcissistic, greedy, manipulative, terrorist shit and it makes me so goddam angry I can't. I cannot even, as the buzzfeed children say. That's the first thing.
The other thing that happened is that FB invited me to join "FB Local," the new fb app that is just events. Events only. It literally just lists events, you can search them by day or category, or venue or whatever. And it shows every single event. No other user generated content.
It all comes down to this: I really do not want to use FB anymore. After fucking Mark Piece of Shit Zuckerberg fucking DID NOT APOLOGIZE the other day after the CA scandal broke for basically assisting Donald Trump in getting elected and he FUCKING KNEW IT AND DID NOTHING THAT PIECE OF FUCKING SHIT, I just... like, I don't want to give that bullshit rape culture alt-right no morals company any more of my data, time or money.
Simultaneously, they kind of also made me obsolete. Download the FB local app, touch "music," (though you'll have to dig for it under all the restaurant and beer shit because nobody likes music anymore, we're all just good consumers, getting fatter and drunker and more obsessed with FEEEEDDDIINNGGGG OUR LONELINESSSSSS, music isn't even on the home screen) and you will see every music event going on on any given day.
Why do you need me? Why do you need my calendar? You kind of don't. This is how these big companies work. I don't have funding or any income from this, but if I did, my job would be obsolete. Not only did FB ruin my community's ability to connect with one another, but it helped consciously and with explicit knowledge to install an evil simpleton, a true GHOUL, a Charlatan of the highest order into the office of the highest power in the world. And now it has taken my "job." With everyone "pivoting to video" (BARF HARD BARF FOREVER) does anyone even fucking read anymore? WHAT THE FUCK IS HAPPENING TO THE WORLD?!?!?!?
FUCK OFF. FUCK YOU, FACEBOOK. STOP RUINING EVERYTHING AND STOP ACTING LIKE YOU'RE OUR FRIEND. YOU WILL NEVER BE MY FRIEND.
So I guess I'm asking. What now? Do I keep mining FB for events and keep a calendar? I don't have time or resources to go to every single web site in town for every venue and track down every event, and even if I did, I would miss a lot because a lot of those venues don't keep that shit on their web sites to begin with.
How do I move forward and cut FB out of my life? And out of yours? Who would even READ this blog if I didn't post the links to it on FB?
I just feel really stuck. I'm not sure how to be relevant and connect with events when I feel so negatively about how Facebook, specifically, has torn us all apart, ruined lives, and sent our government's depravity to new heights while lining the pockets of a fucking douchebag from Harvard who was later played by Jesse Eisenberg. I mean jesus h christ, if Jesse goddam fucking Eisenberg is playing you in a movie, you're probably a dick.
What do you think guys?