We’re Sorry to See You Go: How to Escape All Social Media Forever

I’ve been social media free for a few months now. The psychological benefit is greater than I ever imagined. It feels like real life is back. I don’t suffer the constant nagging drag of having a mind in two places. I highly recommend it.

You already know why you should delete your social media accounts. At best it’s a huge waste of your time. But maybe the threats to democracy and life and free will also get you down.

Here’s how to do it. The following links go to the official support pages for each platform, so hopefully these instructions will be valid in perpetuity.

Delete your Facebook account (just remember to download your photographs first and check that you definitely have your elderly relatives’ phone numbers)

Deactivate Twitter (after maybe sending a few DMs to swap email addresses with people you met there before the enshittening took place)

Delete Instagram (because it may look friendly but it’s owned by Facebook)

Delete WhatsApp (it’s stupid and insidious and also owned by Facebook. Group chat might look convenient but email has been capable of the same thing for decades; if you have a webmail app you’re even still using the same device so the convenience is an illusion. Don’t be strongarmed by cunts volunteer platform evangelists)

Delete Snapchat (unless, of course, you’re 12 or a flasher. No wait, then you really should delete Snapchat!)

Delete TikTok (it’s worth nothing to you and everything to Xi)

Delete Pinterest (fetch will never happen)

Delete LinkedIn (I briefly had a soft spot for the squarest space of all and even Jaron Lanier says it’s a friendly option, but it’s turning to shit anyway)

Delete Reddit (don’t worry, you’ll still see it constantly thanks to its increasingly high place in Google rankings)

Speaking of which, you could always make DuckDuckGo your default search engine instead of Google

Hypocrite’s Corner

Delete Substack (I haven’t done this yet because the platform is good and has helped me to grow my audience. I like how it prioritises longform writing instead of social media nuggets. I am yet to find a good non-corporate alternative. This, of course, might change.)

Migrate from Gmail to Proton Mail (I haven’t done this because Proton Mail is too expensive for me and I don’t like its search functionality, but it’s a good move if those things aren’t a problem for you)

Delete Tumblr (I share an account with my wife and it’s strictly ‘write only,’ a place to store photographs for free. It’s owned by Automattic who I’ve long seen as good guys of the Internet but there may be trouble ahead)

Each time you escape a platform, turn back briefly to say this:


Robert Wringham is the editor of New Escapologist. He also writes books and articles. Read more at wringham.co.uk

8 Responses to “We’re Sorry to See You Go: How to Escape All Social Media Forever”

  1. Tucker says:

    I used to work in social media and the first thing I did when I retired was kill twitter and LinkedIn. I kept FB for community stuff & marketplace but since Canadians can no longer post news, it’s lost 95% of its functionality to me. I check it once-a-day to basically go through my memories and make all of my past posts private (a soothing pastime, shockingly).

    I basically use insta to share random pics but I wouldn’t cry if it went away, I just like the idea of posting a pic a day (yes, I could do this elsewhere but I won’t). I was just gifted a film camera for free from someone in my neighbourhood (yes, on Buy Nothing on FB) so let’s see if that changes anything.

    Everything is so user-hostile these days that I find I just use them less-and-less. Thank the universe that I am too old for TikTok and Snapchat.

  2. Yes, you’re right. That hostility to users is killing it all off so we don’t even have to. I’d love to see the real engagement stats. A beautiful ski slope. (I’d forgotten about the news thing in Canada – absolutely amazing). Enjoy your new film camera! It’s something I’d like to try too.

  3. Ricardo says:

    Hi Robert,

    I would like to give you two recommendations:
    – There are more, and probably better, options if someone leaves gmail, e.g. https://www.autistici.org/
    – Also for the search maschine are options better than ddgo:

    Best regards, stay healthy,

  4. Andy says:

    Thank you so much for helping people leave social networking. I’ve hated it since the start.

    I signed up with Tribe a lifetime ago, and it was indeed fun (and anarchic). Then FB came along, and I tried it out and left a couple of months afterward. I couldn’t stomach their business practices and anti-privacy belief system, and I didn’t want to have a private company enrich itself by monetizing my life events . And except for a LinkedIn profile that has remained static for six years now (maybe longer…), I’ve not been a member of a single (anti)social media.

    I go through little fits of scolding myself for being so judgmental, but I actually have started to become almost agitated when I’m on the metro, look around, and see easily four out of five people with their heads bent down — in subservience largely to social media. And when I have the mischance to look at what people are fixated on, so often it’s a dizzying stream of videos that look made to just deaden the mind.

    Maybe for many people it’s their harmless 15 minutes of mindless fun. But egad I bemoan the fact that so many truly social spaces are becoming anything but and for so empty a pursuit.

  5. I remember Tribe! It was Friendster for me.

    I do think social media is flattening culture out. It doesn’t encourage originality or pluralism. I’m very over it. I think other people are moving on as well, but it’s taking too long.

  6. Kevin says:

    Rather late I’m afraid, but I just wanted to recommend Posteo.de as a cheaper alternative to Proton Mail. The servers are in Germany, they don’t track you or show you advertising, email is encrypted, the calendar and address book can be encrypted if you wish, and it’s only €1 per month. I’ve been using it for over 5 years and they have been very reliable.

  7. Not too late at all and that sounds amazing. Will look into it. Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Latest issues and offers


Issue 14

Our latest issue. Featuring interviews with Caitlin Doughty and the Iceman, with columns by McKinley Valentine, David Cain, Tom Hodgkinson, and Jacob Lund Fisker. 88 pages. £9.


Two-issue Subscription

Get the current and next issue of New Escapologist. 176 pages. £16.

Four-issue Subscription

Get the current and next three issues of New Escapologist. 352 pages. £36.

PDF Archive

Issues 1-13 in PDF format. Over a thousand digital pages to preserve our 2007-2017 archive. 1,160 pages. £25.