Michael van der Galien

Daily Beast Contributor Quits FaceBook Because of “Jewish Summer Camp Ads”

Posted on June 13 2010 10:00 am
Michael van der Galien was born in the Dutch city of Leeuwarden in 1984. For as long as he can remember, he has been obsessed with the United States. When he was 17 years old, he started blogging - of course about America. His articles have been published at Big Hollywood, Pajamas Media, Hot Air (the GreenRoom) and Right Across The Atlantic. He's also an editor for the Dutch conservative blog, De Dagelijkse Standaard.
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Daily Beast contributor Robert Goolrick has decided to quit FaceBook. Although he was once hooked to the (still popular) social networking site, he has lost faith in its usefulness. All his “friends” do is post irrelevant “status updates,” he reads them thinking “and why exactly should I know this?” and that’s pretty much it. It all reminds him of a cocktail party: “Nothing of substance is ever said, it is all about a façade of charm and gaiety, about showing off new clothes, trying out new anecdotes, presenting a falsely socialized version of yourself.” In other words, he believes FaceBook is a waste of time.

Additionally, Goolrick explains, he is angered and worried by the website’s invasion of his private life. “I traveled a great deal last winter, and it bothered me that Facebook knew within seconds that I was in Chicago or Philadelphia or Portland, offering me dates and discounts,” he writes. Even if you don’t share Goolrick’s concerns, you can at least sympathize with him. I too am troubled by FaceBook’s new privacy rules, for instance.

Sadly, the article starts going downhill from there. It also bothers Goolrick, for instance, “that Facebook knows that I graduated from high school in 1966, went to Johns Hopkins and graduated in 1970.” Note to the Daily Beast author: There’s no way for them to know where you studied and when you graduated, unless you told them. In other words, you gave them this information, probably when you first created your account.

Although this concern is obviously rather silly, it gets even worse because Goolrick also has a few Antisemitic arguments up his sleeves. As his editors explain in their introduction to his article:

Quitting the site may be a professional mistake, but Robert Goolrick says he no longer feels embraced by Facebook, but invaded. Friends no longer post anything of substance—and what’s with the ads for Jewish summer camp?

When I read the above, I thought to myself “no, he couldn’t have actually said that, could he?” Well:

Facebook thinks I’m Jewish, which I often wish I were, because I’m constantly being urged to attend Hebrew school, or go to a Jewish camp for the summer.

Let me get this straight: Goolrick quits FaceBook because he’s annoyed by perfectly normal and non-intrusive advertisements for Hebrew schools and Jewish summer camps. And as if that’s not bad enough, he and his Daily Beast editors think there’s nothing wrong whatsoever with, firstly, being bothered by them because of their Jewishness, and secondly going so far as to disable his account because of them.

Since when has Antisemitism become socially acceptable and politically correct? Would Goolrick also have blasted FaceBook if the ads were for, say, Arabic, Greek or Italian summer camps and language courses? Somehow I think not.

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