Do your kids spend too much time on Facebook? Paul Baier felt his daughter Rachel did, so he offered her $200 to steer clear of the website for five months. The best part? It was actually her idea.
According to her dad, 14-year-old Rachel was spending way too much time on the social networking site while at the same time finding herself frustrated because she had been unable to earn any extra cash from babysitting jobs. The honors student admitted to her dad that Facebook was a distraction in her life, and like an expert negotiator, asked him for $70 if she agreed to quit for one month. Several negotiations later, Rachel and her dad struck a deal for five months Facebook-free to the tune of $200.
How will the elder Baier ensure his daughter is living up to her end of the bargain? Rachel gave her dad her password which he then went ahead and changed, denying her access to her site. Sure, it's possible she could just create another account, but from initial reports, it sounds like Rachel is just as excited about the Facebook break as her dad is.
In an interview with Yahoo.news, Baier said, "I've realized that she is part of generation of kids that has grown up on Facebook. She's been on it for two years full time. This is two years of 24/7 teen discussion of friends, clothes, parties, etc. They can't get away from it. I'mproud she recognized the benefit of a hiatus. She plans to go on using it after the contract end."
Interestingly, the "Facebook Break" has become what some are calling the latest trend in social media. According to a recent survey by the Pew Research Center, 61 percent of current Facebook users say that at one time or another in the past they have voluntarily taken a break from using Facebook for a period of several weeks or more.
Why are folks taking a "Facebook Vacation?" The survey found that the largest group — 21 percent — of users felt they were simply too busy with other demands, while others cited lack of relevant content on the site, boredom with Facebook in general, too much drama and negativity among their FB friends, and privacy concerns among their reasons.
I have to admit, the idea of a Facebook vacation is intriguing to me. Maybe a break is in my future? How about you? Can you imagine a world without Facebook?