On Thursday, August 1st, 2019, I had announced I have the full intention of leaving Facebook and all of their services for good. Facebook had broken the last straw for me. I will be unpublishing both pages, closing down Clubtaku, and deactivating my account on September 1st, 2019.
Why was this the last straw?
Let’s rewind to the 2018 US Midterms back in November. I discovered through personal investigation that my data had been sold multiple times by Google, Microsoft and Facebook. My family is conservative and Catholic. Abortion is a top issue for them. I discovered why Planned Parenthood has came to my door to inquire my voting intentions and information (basic canvassing effort). This is standard ”Get Out The Vote” strategy. I know I had pulled my information from the Democratic Party back in 2016 quite thoroughly. I have never discussed Planned Parenthood online nor have I ever visited their website. Tracing my data back after requesting my data, I discovered that Microsoft and Google had given my data to a firm who then distributed my data to many sources from firms that share data with telemarketers to the DNC. I am willing to assume and claim that these two corporations had sold my data despite me editing my privacy settings as thoroughly as possible. That visit from Planned Parenthood nearly tore my family apart and put me in harm’s way as a pansexual, leftist activist trans woman in a conservative household. That was the last straw for me and I had slowly spent time from November to June requesting data from all sorts of places, deactivating accounts, salvaging important contacts before purging my personal Yahoo and Gmail accounts that I’ve had since childhood, and organizing and storing my data on my own watch. I get a scary email claiming I had a serious vulnerability with my identity. I discovered that Windows (Microsoft) had compromised my data again. That was the last straw for Microsoft for me. I saved what I needed and switched to Linux and am never looking back. The only time I use Windows now is either to repair somebody else’s PC or to run it through a virtual machine on Linux to either review a game that I absolutely can’t play on Linux natively/near natively (last resort) or to play a game with anti-cheat software that also doesn’t require my information (so very few games nowadays). The only way I use Google is through my two business emails that have no real information about me and only have fake information filtered through a spoofed MAC address, a VPN and fake names and complex/randomly generated passwords. I take my privacy seriously. This is for me and my family.
I woke up that Thursday morning rather groggy from a heavy sleep after pulling an all nighter with my new PC repair freelance gig only to log into FB completely unable to post both to my personal account, my backup FB page, any FB group, and my main FB page. I received a notification and email that I must confirm my primary location to gain access to my account. I had been using a VPN to access FB due to the well known fact that our data being abused is not just a violation of our privacy rights, but it is Facebook’s business model. I could not use my VPN’s IP Address — Facebook wasn’t accepting it. So the only way to login and start posting again was to reveal my real IP Address. So I was in a predicament. It was either I leave FB there and then to not comply and maintain my privacy or I compromise myself to let you all know about this predicament. Facebook made me choose between my privacy rights and all of you. This is a level of fucked up that I had never seen before and I have seen Facebook do a lot to other colleagues who run pages and even other friends and family who have been in seriously fucked up positions because of Facebook.
This company, I decided, is too evil and morally bankrupt for me to justify me using the site anymore. Last Tuesday (July 23rd, 2019), I had forgotten about my page’s 5 year anniversary. I had been putting up with Facebook’s bullshit for 5 long years towing away to inform, to entertain, and to elevate all of you at such an intense pace and dedication. I post dozens of posts every day, spend time to deliver content like my podcast because I found it fun and rewarding to have such an amazing community. I am truly sorry for the inconvenience this announcement brings, but I cannot bring myself to use this site or its services any longer.
I really started building this audience way back in 2010 when I had started paneling at local conventions while I was in high school. I had a different page that didn’t really go anywhere, but it had enthusiastic people who loved my panels. I enjoyed doing panels and I updated that first page to get to know my first regulars better. I did this for 4 years until I decided to just start new and have fun. Oh boy did I have fun making Overly Critical Otakus. The page was viral at least once a week and I made a lot of friends with other pages during 2014 and 2015. From the start, I discussed piracy and other important issues that faces our communities still. I covered simulcasts and posted about my favorite video game moments. I neglected everything for Facebook because I not only had fun, but that is where all of the talk was. It mattered. I was helping people understand a more complex way to discuss anime, gaming and more things. I was making an impact in the discourses for the past 5 years while I’ve been here on FB and do understand the respect that I have earned. I started Weebspeak (the podcast) with Fally on April 2nd, 2017.
For the past 2 years, both Fally and I have changed. I came out as trans on November 1st, 2018 due to my hiatus earlier that spring. At the start of 2019, I made a vow that I would have a different approach to rebrand as a person and as a content creator. I came out more strongly against bigotry of all sorts in the anime and gaming communities. I’ve lost thousands of followers in the past half year alone for speaking out and for just being trans. You know what I think of that? I think of that as a success. I don’t want to be associated with bigots. It’s best if they left. I still think this now and take pride in purging my audience. I am confident with my skills to regain those follows as a number. For every bigot I lose, I gain 3 more sane, chill people. It’s worked out splendidly so far.
This new chapter with me leaving Facebook is just a new chapter. This is not the end for me, my audience or the content that I make. I will never stop making content until I die. This is a time to start fresh and do a better job tailoring my audience how I would like rather than just let the numbers roll in and clout chase blindly.
I am fully aware that Twitter and YouTube are no good for privacy concerns either. They have not put me in a similar situation that Facebook has. I can take care of myself. It is my hope that if you enjoy my content that you follow me on these two platforms. I use them more often and using these to grow won’t be as limiting for me as it was on Facebook. For community chatter, to replace Clubtaku group and Messenger chat, I encourage everybody from the club to join my Discord server to continue having fun and to keep in direct touch with me. It’s easy, don’t worry! As for Twitch, I just can’t livestream consistently to justify transferring everybody to it. My internet is consistently terrible. I could see myself being active in the future.
That being said, Twitter is the most important transfer here. It’s where I am most active and it, alongside Discord, is the easiest and quickest ways to stay updated with my content and announcements. I am learning programming right now to start up my own blog using Jekyll. So stay tuned on Twitter for announcements like that and for podcast releases.
Ultimately, I want to thank my patrons and my loyal regulars for all of your support for all of these years. I would not be as motivated as I am without your interaction and support. For those few thousand new followers of mine, sorry for such a short lived time on my page. The future looks bright and I am ready to traverse and regrow!
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