Time Out For Facebook?

Some of you already know that late-night television host Jimmy Kimmel has launched a major campaign: National Unfriend Day. If you haven’t heard about it, perhaps you’ve been too busy posting on your Facebook page.

In any case, the idea is this: Prune your “friends” on Facebook and spend less time on the site. “Kimmel has grown progressively more vexed by the online service, which he views as a gigantic waste of time,” the Los Angeles Times explained.

“Everyone I work with is on Facebook all the time,” Kimmel complained to the newspaper. “I just don’t understand why they’re interested in what somebody they went to the fifth grade with is having for lunch.”

Peter Drucker understood all too well that time is not for wasting. “Most people take for granted this unique, irreplaceable and necessary resource,” he wrote in The Effective Executive. “Nothing else, perhaps, distinguishes effective executives as much as their tender loving care of time.”

For senior managers, especially, the perils on this front are acute. “There are constant pressures toward unproductive and wasteful time-use,” warned Drucker, who believed that keeping detailed track of one’s activities through a time log was essential to effectiveness.

But Drucker also worried about the loss of something beyond just hours on the clock. He also feared that modern society was losing its sense of community—the sort of community that Facebook at least partially provides.

[EXPAND More]“People do need a community,” Drucker asserted in Post-Capitalist Society. “They need it especially in the sprawling huge cities and suburbs in which more and more of us live.

“Even if the bond is close, one cannot count on family,” Drucker added. “Geographic and occupational mobility mean that people no longer stay in the same place, class or culture where they were born, where their parents live, where their siblings and their cousins live. The community that is needed . . . has to be based on commitment and compassion rather than being imposed by proximity and isolation.”

What do you think: Is Facebook an essential builder of community in a digital age, or is it simply a giant time suck?[/EXPAND]