Escaping the news and my difficulties with social media apps

I’ve had enough.  I took a bold step last night and wiped several apps, mostly social media, from my mobile phone and tablet.  I am on a quest.  I must escape…the news.

A partial list of social media applications available in the Google Play store

I watch little network broadcast television at home but it feels like I am subjected to a barrage of news headlines where I least expect them.  Simply opening the Google Chrome browser on my Android phone reveals a miniature headline and thumbnail graphic by CNN:  Las Vegas gunman planned to escape after massacre, sheriff says.

Thanks, but what does that have to do with my need to purchase a replacement utensil basket for my dishwasher?

There must be a way to disable news headlines from the Google Chrome application on my smartphone.  I can’t find a setting so unfortunately I’ll have to search the web for a workaround.  Oh shucks, it’s a vicious cycle.

It’s time to re-brand social media to reflect what it’s really become:  “The News”

Turning my attention to social media when in the early 2000s was the quintessential escape from real life.  I recall the days of yesteryear when applications like MySpace and Facebook were focused on individual expression and where I was immersed in learning about my friends’ taste in music and hobbies.  But now?  I must be cautious of the pesky What’s Trending bar on Facebook.  My wandering eyes reveal a headline from NBC News:  Three American soldiers were killed in Niger in a suspected ambush.

Okay, this is frustrating.  I head over to the Google Now application to check tomorrow’s weather forecast.  After all, the first line in the app description within the Google Play store reads:  The Google app keeps you in the know about the things you care about. Then why the heck are there more news headlines shown here beneath the weather, and why can’t I remove them?

Lastly, even a mundane social media application like LinkedIn, one which is focused on establishing business contacts and networks, isn’t immune to displaying political world news headlines.

Maybe it’s time to re-brand social media to reflect what it’s really become:  “The News.”

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2 Responses »

  1. I hate the way the news distracts me.



  1. How-to remove news article suggestions from the Google Chrome browser on phones and tablets | On writing, coding, technology, and more…

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I am Matt Robb, a technology and fiction writer. Continue reading →

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