I'm deleting my Facebook page today

I'm deleting my Facebook page today at 1pm Pacific today.

You can watch live here, and perhaps join me!

Here is the email I sent to my list on Wednesday with why.ย 

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Jason Calacanis <jason@>
Date: Wed, May 19, 2010 at 5:07 PM
Subject: I'm deleting my Facebook page

Date: May 19th 2010
JasonNation Members: 23,286 emails strong
Location: Mahalo HQ, Santa Monica
Republishing: Republish anywhere (with header/footer)
Subscribe/Unsub: www.jasonnation.com
Some exciting news: http://tcrn.ch/bR35Xu


I've decided that this Friday at 1 pm Pacific, I will broadcast the
deletion of my Facebook page live on the Internet. (Watch it here:

Simply put, I no longer trust Facebook or Mark Zuckerberg with my information.

Additionally, Facebook has become a waste of time for me. Every minute
I put into Facebook is a minute I will never get back. It's time I
could have spent writing one of these emails to you guys, finding new
startups to invest in, working on Mahalo.com (almost profitable!) or
spending time with my family.

Facebook is a Ponzi scheme run by a very bad actor. The best way to
express our discontent with Mark Zuckerberg is to simply walk away.

We trusted Zuckerberg with our personal information and he has abused
that trust over and over again. He won't even come forward and discuss
the issue with anyone in the industry–including his own users!
Question: What kind of CEO gets slammed like Zuckerberg has in the
last week and doesn't make themselves available to discuss the issue
with the press or users?

Answer: A guilty one.

You call this a gift?
In a final insult, Facebook lackey Tim Sparapani said this week: "The
flip side of this privacy story… is that we have customized and
individualized every single website out there for people, if they
choose to have it. Thatโ€™s an extraordinary gift to the public."


Did I sign up for Facebook and give you my personal information so you
could give it to third parties WITHOUT my permission? Uhhh…. no.

We signed up with Facebook to share photos and updates with our
friends and families. You duped and double-crossed us by giving *your*
partners *our* private information so you could begin your world
domination plans one Javascript include at a time.

Essentially, Facebook is reselling our data in order to get websites
to add the "Like" button. It may not be a cash transaction yet, but it
is clearly quid pro quo. If you want to give the world a gift, how
about letting us export our own data?

Question: If you don't allow users to export their own data, but you
do allow your partners to suck it down instantly–and for all
time–what does that say about your intent?

Answer: It says your intent is bad.

NOTE: Hey Sparapani, the super savvy Danny Sullivan F.C.Y.A. (look it
up!): Facebook did not create the personalized web

Facebook alternatives
If you're tired of Facebook's games, I suggest that you use the
following services: Twitter.com for Updates, Flickr.com for Photo
Sharing and Geni.com for your family tree. Those three services are
much better for their individual functions (updates, photos and family
connections) than Facebook!

That leaves casual games, the only piece for which I don't have a
really good recommendation (besides getting a sick iPad and playing

Zynga, makers of Mafia Wars and Farmville, knows they can't trust
Zuckerberg and they going to have all their games off-site this year.
Sure they signed a five-year pack with Facebook this week, but that
must have been driven by Facebook desperate not to lose them. My guess
is Pincus got them to take only 10% of the virtual currency avalanche,
in exchange for their blessing on Facebook's standard 30% rake.

Zynga will also start a social gaming network, basically Facebook
without the photo sharing, later this year I'm sure. Pincus is way to
smart to get Zuckerpunched.

If only Evan Williams would step up and have the Twitter team build
(private) groups, photo hosting, video hosting and support for Zynga's
games, we would actually have a place to move to.

Twitter needs to create a viable alternative to Facebook this year.
Twitter has a leader you can trust; Facebook does not. You can do it
Twitter…. Step up!

Three ways to "leave" Facebook
If you're going to join me (and folks like Leo Laporte and Peter
Rojas) in leaving Facebook, please consider recording yourself doing
so. Post that video to YouTube saying "I deleted/deactivated my
Facebook page!"

As we've discussed, there are better services for you to use from
companies you can trust.

I suggest doing one of three things below with your Facebook account
*after* you back it up.

[ Note: Before taking these steps, I suggest downloading your photos
manually and/or trying Backupify's beta Facebook backup service–which
is free. www.backupify.com. I'm an angel investor in this amazing

1. Just stop using Facebook: Don't log in, don't republish your tweets
to Facebook and don't update your status. Turn off all your photos.
This is a basic step that will also get you a lot time back for the
rest of your life. Try NOT logging into Facebook for three days and
see how much better your life is–I'm sure it will be! Take your
"Facebook time" and use it to actually ask a friend or family member
how they are doing. Take the dog or your kids (or yourself!) for a

The fact is, Facebook sends only a dozen folks to a link when I post
it. Compare that to hundreds to thousands of people clicking through
on Twitter (on a CTR basis Twitter is 10-20x Facebook!). Also, the
content on Twitter it typically valuable to me. The content on
Facebook tends to be "I'm playing this game" or someone "liking"
something inane. Get off Facebook and do something more productive.
Nothing important happens on Facebook–nothing.

2. Deactivate your account: This renders your account dormant, but you
can still log in at any time and "wake it up" again. Bear in mind,
your information is still stored on Facebook. They still have your
data. Having said that, there is no harm in trying this either…
Deactivate for the rest of the month and see what June 1st feels like
after you wean yourself off the Facebook crack. Just two or three
clicks and you can do it: http://www.facebook.com/deactivate.php

3. Delete your account: This deletes everything from Facebook–though
I'm not sure it removes your data from their partners sites and I'm
not sure how long they keep your data on backup drives. I'm hearing
conflicting reports, so if you know (or work inside Facebook and have
411), please ship it in confidence to me! If you're done with
Facebook, don't delay. Just do it! Those friends from high school will
Google you and find your Twitter account if it's at all important. ๐Ÿ™‚

I don't think Facebook is going away, but if they see 100 people turn
their accounts off every day, then 1,000, then some day 10,000, they
are going to start taking the issue more seriously. Good people of the
Internet should stand up for what is right and send a clear message to
Facebook: we don't trust you, so we can't participate in your service.

1. Does Facebook provide any value to you?
2. Can Twitter or Zynga become viable alternatives to Facebook?
3. Are you considering leaving Facebook?
4. Rank, in order, the most loathsome companies and why: Goldman
Sachs, Facebook, BP Oil.
5. I will be in New York City next week for TechCrunch Disrupt. See you there!

Best regards,



Some housekeeping:

1. Mahalo is looking for developers! We use cutting-edge technologies
like Cassandra and Django, but you don't have to have worked with
those before to join our team. Nope, we hire people based on how we
think they will "fit our culture." Our culture is one of hard work,
dedication, resourcefulness, resiliency and is filled with positive
and quixotic individuals. You will not survive in a company like this
unless you are absurdly hard working, but if you are you will
immediately be given a ton of responsibility. You'll also get to work
in a pure meritocracy, where people rise and fall with their
contribution–not their age or ability to suck up to the boss. We love
hiring folks outside of Los Angeles and bringing them to live in Santa
Monica. So, if you want to work for the next three or four years at
Mahalo and crush it send me your resume and cover letter. If you would
like to take it easy, phone it in and not get taken out of your
comfort zone send me your resume and I will forward it to a BDC (big
dumb company). ๐Ÿ™‚

2. The Open Angel Forum is booming! We're coming to Boston in June,
and London and Seattle shortly after that. If you know of any angel
investors in these cities send them to krute@openangelforum.com.
Details at www.openangelforum.com.

3. TechCrunch50 is, sadly, not happening this year. However, as the
creator of TechCrunch50 I will be marching on and launching 50
companies over two days in early 2011. Please bookmark
www.thelaunchconference.com for more details.

4. We just had the CEO of Groupon, Andrew Mason, on This Week in
Startups. He was great!

5. I will be at the Wall Street Journal's amazing D Conference for the
fifth year in a row–and three years after launching Mahalo! Looking
forward to seeing everyone there and sharing some big news. ๐Ÿ™‚

6. Having done eight angel investments this year I'm only going to do
two more I think. Those startups will, most-likely, come in through
the Open Angel Forum. The best way to pitch me on an idea is to submit
your company to OAF or send me a link to your product. I don't invest
in products that are not built already (why would you when you can
invest in products that have been built is my thinking).

7. I'm working on the book proposal after getting a bunch of
interesting offers. What would you want to hear about if I did a book?

8. If you are interested in pitching a show for ThisWeekIn.com please
send it to TWI's creative director Lon Harris at lon@mahalo.com. I
don't have any day-to-day involvement in the company. Feel free to cc
me of course.

Jason McCabe Calacanis
902 Colorado Avenue
Santa Monica, CA 90401

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