The Last of the Facebook and Twitter Holdouts
Still having trouble boarding the social media bandwagon? You're not alone.
April 7, 2009— -- They're a rare breed, some might even say an endangered species.
But as social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace and Twitter continue to build populations surpassing those of many countries, the last of the Web 2.0 holdouts remain proud to be freewheeling free agents.
Day in and day out, the invitations to join the social network nattering pour in.
But, especially as members gripe about Facebook's new facelift, its terms of service controversy and, now, Twitter's tendency to buckle under the strain of a swarm of new users, the unfriended and tweet-free are relieved to be independent.
"I receive emails from friends and family, requesting to join these networks almost daily. At first I did feel pressured to join but I quickly got over that. I now reject every invitation to join and I don't feel bad about it," said Oscar Salgado, 37, a social worker from Honolulu.
Danielle Carter, 29, an office administrator in New York agreed.
"I certainly see the draw and the appeal from everyone around me who's a part of Facebook, but I appreciate that I don't have any of the problems they can bring," she said.
According to a March report from research firm Nielsen, two-thirds of the planet's Internet population visit social networking or blogging sites.
Across the world, activity in "member communities" accounts for one in every 11 minutes spent online, the report said. In the United Kingdom, the average is one in every six minutes. In Brazil, it's one of every four minutes.
Given such ubiquity, the nonconformist anti-networkers could seem like curiosities to the people accustomed to sharing every detail of their lives online. But the Web 2.0 teetotalers just don't understand what the fuss is all about and couldn't be happier on their own.
"Some of the great joys in life are meeting new people in person and people watching and spending time with my kids and writing," said David Vicker, a 37-year-old freelance media producer who lives in the suburbs of Kansas City, Mo.