How to delete Facebook and not lose your friends (and photos)

by Ronald Langeveld


Facebook is boring, it used to be great now it’s boring. I used to have 200 friends now I have 1500. There is no way I know 1500 people. Draconian measures must be taken to save my relationship with the social network. The unfriend button is my path to making Facebook an enjoyable experience once again.

Despite Facebook’s very best algorithms my feed is mostly posts I don’t want to see. Let me clarify what posts I don’t want to see means;

Anything from Upworthy
Posts about dead dogs
Injured dogs
Mistreated dogs
Dogs that need to be adopted
Dogs with skin diseases that nobody loves
Sick cats
Dead cats
Cats that need adoption
Anything about people in China eating cats
Anything from the ASPCA, PETA or other animal rights organization
Anything from Upworthy
Dead babies
Abortion
Sick babies
Charities that help sick babies
Monoamniotic twin babies born holding hands but covered in blood and all kinds of other grossness
Anything baby at all unless it’s your beautiful newborn baby (in that case try to take a decent photo, remember lighting is everything)
Politics
Any quiz taken on Buzzfeed that lets you know what character on Game of Thrones you’d be, or what kind of house you live in or any fucking quiz from Buzzfeed
Anything at all from Buzzfeed
Anything from Upworthy
Anything that includes the phrase ‘and what happened next will amaze you’
News that’s older than 72 hours. Just cause it’s new to you doesn’t mean anyone cares
Sports
Anything from Upworthy
What that leaves is simply the lives of the people I am friends with. What are you up to? Make something cool recently? Oh congrats! you got engaged, kids look great, cool pictures from the party, WOW you got accepted, a new job!, a new car!, a new boyfriend!, I hadn’t realized you were gay, great pictures, that’s a nice one too!, your trip to the Galapagos looks incredible. I care, please share you life. That’s why I like Facebook it lets me keep up with my friend’s lives especially the ones I might not otherwise have any access to.

I defriend people who share things I am not interested in. It makes me hate the platform. It’s like adding salt to lemonade; the entire glass tastes like shit.

Facebook is different for everyone, some value sharing things I find unsavory (this is an assumption, why else would so many people share so much garbage). If that’s your thing that’s cool. I choose to unfriend you, if we are actual friends IRL then we shall remain so, I just don’t want to see your shares anymore — yes I know I can unfollow, I’m not interested. If you don’t share my sentiment I understand entirely and I highly recommend and encourage you to Unfriend me, I won’t take it personally.

Written by Casey Neistat, 2014

You see.... I tried this in 2017... It absolutely didn't work!

People still share things way too much and every time you go on Facebook there's like a whole plague of negativity that's trying to give me cancer. Just no. It's not cool. It really is no longer the cool thing it was back in 2008.

The thing is, having lived abroad there's a whole lot of connections with people and photos I uploaded over the years, that I don't wanna lose... But thankfully there's a way.

1) Log into Facebook. Don't look at any of the cancerous content on your feed and go directly into settings.

2) Click on "Your Facebook Information"

3) Click on "download your information".

4) Now you've got a whole lot of options regarding what you want to download.

I deselected everything and only chose "Photos and Videos" and "Friends". Why? Well I honestly don't care what I posted. It's probably all embarrassing shit anyway. I'd rather not be relive it. Oh and the format - As a programmer, I chose json.

I then click on Create File. This basically generates a compressed .zip file with all this data you requested. It takes about an hour till its ready for you to download.

Eventually it's ready to download
And now it's downloading.

After downloading it successfully, I backed it up onto my external hard drive.

Extracting it, it gives me a lot of files. These are all my photos.

Now, to keep these files secure (It's already on my hard disk, but I need a little bit extra), I backed them up onto my Google Photos account. About 1900 images.

As for my friend list.. well.. It's all in Json format.. So now you can essentially use the power of your brain to think how your friend looked.
If you can't, well then you probably weren't friends anyway. Sorry.

I'll still figure out what I'm gonna do with the friends list. But hey, at least I have names, which is essentially my biggest weakness. I'm terrible with names.

What's left now, is to delete your account.

  1. Click Settings.
  2. Click Your Facebook Information in the left column.
  3. Click Delete Your Account and Information, then click Delete My Account.
  4. Enter your password, click Continue and then click Delete Account.
And now live happily ever after.

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