Documentary Review: ‘Why I’m Not On Facebook’

Review by Lauryn Angel

In the opening of his documentary, Brant Pinvidic is pretty clear that he does not like Facebook. His son, however, is desperate to be on the site, and so Pinvidic launches an investigation into the site. His central concern: “Is there something wrong with Facebook? Or is there something wrong with me?”

In order to answer this question, Pinvidic conducts interviews with individuals such as Roseanne Barr, who thinks Facebook is purely for narcissists, and the Winklevoss twins – who, despite their claims that Mark Zuckerberg stole their idea, both use Facebook. Mostly, though, once he sets up a dummy Facebook account, Pinvidic resorts to a series of pranks intended to demonstrate to users that their profiles are not as private as they think. The documentary is not all laughs, though. Pinvidic interviews college recruiters and employers who use Facebook to vet applicants before they even interview them. He even interviews a burglar who admitted to using Facebook to find people to rob. On the plus side, though, he also interviews happily married couples who met on Facebook.

Despite the personal lens through which Pinvidic examines Facebook, the documentary delivers a well-developed picture of why people join Facebook, how they use and mis-use it, and what they get from it. Pinvidic doesn’t really answer his question, but instead presents a new one: “Does Facebook make people stupid? Or are these just stupid people on Facebook?”

As you might expect, the answer to both of these questions really depends on the Facebook user. This documentary will likely have you asking yourself several questions about your use of Facebook – ranging from whether your privacy settings are strict enough to how much of narcissist you really are.

Available ON DEMAND starting Tuesday, November 3rd.

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