What's It Like To Remove Facebook Profile?

4 individuals Share however Their Lives modified when Quitting The Social NetworkWhat's.

After revelations that Cambridge Analytica, a British data processing firm with links to the Trump campaign, allegedly harvested the private knowledge of over fifty million Facebook users while not permission, many folks across (other) social media sites shared the hashtag #DeleteFacebook, suggesting that the information leaks were the ultimate straw in their relationship with the social media large.


CEO Mark Zuckerberg addressed the allegations in a Facebook post, saying, "We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can't then we don't deserve to serve you." Facebook has released an update to their terms of service on April 4, plainly spelling out what data it collects.

Of course, even if you’re not concerned with data, there are many reasons why someone might decide to stop using social media in general. However, others argue that, in the 14 years since its inception, Facebook and other platforms under its umbrella have become for people all over the world — making it more difficult to end their relationship with the service. Bustle spoke with four about why they made the jump, and how their lives have changed since.

Joshua Litvinoff, 24, deleted his Facebook account following the Cambridge Analytica allegations, after having used it for over 10 years. “Data collection is definitely a concern, but I understand it to an extent,” he tells Bustle. “For these services to be free, I understand that they need to make money somehow. However, I like transparency, and I want to know exactly what the services are sharing, or collecting.”

Martina Dorff, 26, deleted her account right after the 2016 election, she tells Bustle. “[Data collection] wasn’t a top concern when I deleted, but I was starting to think about it more.” She adds that she now “actively avoid[s] new methods of data collection” such as smart speakers. She mentions she still uses Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, and despite her concerns over data, isn’t likely to delete it. “I can’t bring myself to delete [Instagram] because […] Instagram is my only link left to all of my IRL friends, because very few of them have Twitter,” she says.


For others, privacy didn’t play into their decision to quit Facebook at all. Hayley Bennett, 20, says that self-care concerns led her to deactivate her Facebook account. After seeing a 60 Minutes clip that detailed how apps are designed to encourage engagement, she says she was “freaked out” by the “psychological intricacies of the process.” She tells Bustle, “After watching the clip, I kept my social media accounts but removed all the apps from my phone. I still check up on my accounts online, but usually once or twice a day maximum, compared to before when I would absentmindedly open [social media apps] when I had no notifications.” Bennett adds that her Facebook account is currently active, but she has deactivated and reactivated it several times.

Working in TV also gave me more flexibility when it came to visiting my grandma.In between jobs, I’d often fly back to Chicago to see her, a month here or a month there. And, when her health got worse around 2011 and she started to hospital-hop around Chicago, I found myself leaving TV and temp jobs before they were over in order to meet her at the foot of her hospital bed instead. Finally, in 2015, a one-month visit to see her turned into a-year-and-a-half, up

During that year-and-a-half, I went to Chicago with one very part-time remote.

That month in Chicago turned into a-year-and-a-half seemingly overnight. I rarely left my grandma’s side — and when I did to briefly go back to L.A. to finally get rid of my apartment there, she died. In addition to being crushed, I couldn’t help but feel that there was some divine intervention at work — my grandma had never liked fast-paced lifestyle, and getting rid of the only thing still tying me to it — my L.A. apartment — seemed like a sign.


She’d been a huge traveler herself and had always encouraged me to live abroad. Now, with my remote jobs, I actually could.

But deleting Facebook isn't without its pitfalls. “I feel like my life has gotten 10 percent harder since I deleted Facebook because so many apps require Facebook logins, especially dating apps,” Dorff tells Bustle. “Also, it’s hard to keep a social calendar without Facebook event invites. People have to actively seek me out to invite me to a party and a lot of people just don’t want to do that.”

Although taking care of goats was much different than I’d anticipated, grief — and the goats — ended up being the catalyst for my

Oftentimes, I work New York hours, where the places I work for are based. When “living” in countries in Eastern Europe, such as Poland, they’re six hours ahead of New York, which means I can go explore a castle, kayak, or snowshoe all day, then get to my laptop by 6 p.m. (my time) to work my U.S. jobs.