In the documentary Why I’m Not on Facebook, director Brant Pinvidic goes in search for the real answer of why he does not have a Facebook profile. This may be the most ironic documentary ever but well…so is Facebook in a lot of ways, so I think it hits the point.
The film first spawned when Brandt’s soon to be thirteen year old son (which is the legal age for Facebook) asked his father why he won’t let him have a Facebook page and why Brandt doesn’t have one himself. This leaves Brandt to searching for answers as to what he has against Facebook. In the documentary, Brandt hires a team of Facebook enthusiasts to help him get in-depth information about Facebook. The team then makes a fake profile page for Brandt, using his face in photoshopped images, to see how many friends he can get, why people add him and what the pros and cons of having a Facebook profile are.
As Steve Steel, Brandt’s alter ego, he befriends hundreds of people just within a few days. From there, he then gets to know these “friends” of his even going as far as to calling them from the number they have listed on their pages and even meets a couple of them at their homes since they also have their addresses listed on their profile, all without these people knowing that Brandt was coming to pay them a visit ahead of time. This all sounds pretty creepy and stalker-ish but due to the information these people provided on their Facebook pages, they leave themselves open to things such as this.
Brandt interviews numerous people who own Facebook pages. The interviews vary from people such as comedian Roseanne Barr, Dr. Drew Pinsky, Facebook personalities like “the pink lady of Hollywood”, a burglar who preys on Facebook users through Facebook, and even interviews the Winklevoss twins, whom are the first ones to come up with Facebook and later sued Mark Zuckerberg for taking their idea. Ironically enough they both have Facebook pages. These interviews get in-depth with the pros and cons of having a Facebook page.
Some of the cons that the documentary went into were things like strangers knowing your whole life before you even meet them, marriages ending because of Facebook, people not getting hired for a job and also people losing jobs based on what their Facebook profiles displayed and much more. The pros that the documentary went into were things like relationships beginning because of meeting through Facebook, finding long-lost relatives, things like that.
Watching this documentary made me second guess myself of having a page, though I’m pretty good with knowing what to post and what not to post on Facebook. Brandt Pinvidic does do a good job displaying both the pros and cons of owning a Facebook page and at the end of it all, I felt that there were much more cons than pros to being on Facebook. The documentary was filled with irony, just like some of the things people post on their Facebook. In the end, I’m not too sure if Brandt Pinvidic actually answers why he does not have a Facebook page but he does raise awareness of what information is out their for people to get, whether it’s from Facebook or just the swipe of a credit card.
I give Why I’m Not on Facebook 8 fridges out of 10.
Why I’m Not on Facebook will be available On Demand Nov. 3.