Tired of Facebook but need to keep in contact with Messenger? Here’s how.

Tired of Facebook but need to keep in contact with Messenger? Here’s how.

I’ve gotten tired of Facebook.

It is a huge time suck with no real benefit other than seeing how many people like your latest status update or liking your friend’s 20th food shot. It degrades the human experience. Why do you need to see your friends? You already know they got a new cat, painted their living room, spent Saturday at the beach, and might be going out tonight (but probably not).

But, like most people, I use Facebook Messenger for everything. Literally, everything. We coordinate work meetings. News coverage. Photo shoots. Literally everything we do is over Facebook Messenger. We tried Slack… bleh.

So what to do? One answer is to just not use Facebook, but we all know how long that lasts.


I found something that works for me (but may not work forever or for every one).

Using the iPhone app (again, it may work other ways, but this was my process), I went into settings, general, and at the bottom was Deactivate in tiny blue letters on the right. I clicked it, went through the four screens, and done. The app said my login session had expired, I closed it.

Then I switched back to the Messenger app. It immediately said my session had expired and asked me to log in again. So I used the telephone number associated with my Facebook account (not my email or username), and the password. Voila! I’m back on messenger and chatting away. However, visiting my Facebook url (http://facebook.com/dane.tidwell) it gives the Content Not Found error.

And there you go. No more Facebook account. But still an active Messenger account.


j j j

We took down the navigation. Here’s why:

The way people use the internet has changed. From the beginnings of the Yahoo! directory of sites to search engines and the (make this site your) home page, the internet has become more social. More engaging.

From a metrics standpoint, our data shows that people don’t use navigation anymore. They arrive to Chicago Phoenix either from a social media link, Google, or direct.

In fact, we tracked very little usage of the primary site navigation over the last two months.

So we took it down.

Every section of Chicago Phoenix is still accessible from the beautifully designed homepage. Our story pages are rich with related articles and links to referenced content. We want our readers to get lost in the wonderfully composed works of our columnists and reporters.

Let us know what you think.

j j j

Want to mass-delete Facebook “friends”? Here’s the best way.

maxresdefault-5Facebook doesn’t make it easy to delete friends. In fact, they make it nearly impossible – putting the friends you actually want to keep at the top of the list, multiple dialog confirmation boxes (are you really, really sure you want to unfriend this person), infinite scroll “load more”, and random page refreshes taking you back to the top of your friend list, and warnings that you’re deleting too many friends at once (which can lock your account for days, since not being friends with someone anymore apparently violates the Facebook TOS).

When you’re deleting one or two people, this is fine. You can do it right from the person’s profile timeline.

But what if you want to delete dozens of people? Or hundreds?

Over the weekend, that was my goal. Having worked in politics and LGBT advocacy I had hundreds of “friends” that I only met once,  shook hands with twice, or never met at all (social media advocacy).

The easiest way to delete these people isn’t through the Facebook site at all, but rather on the mobile app (its only been tested on iOS).

The Facebook mobile app doesn’t use infinite scroll, so it loads the entire friend list immediately. There aren’t multiple confirmation dialog boxes. There’s no screen refresh after a dozen deletes. And there’s no warning that you’re deleting too many people and your account could be blocked.

The instructions are dead simple.

  1. Open the iOS Facebook app
  2. Click on the hamburger menu
  3. Click on Friends
  4. Click the icon next to the name of the people you want to unfriend.
  5. Done.
j j j