A Wellesley, Mass., dad has agreed to pay his 14-year-old daughter $200 if she ditches her Facebook account, in an effort to extract her from "the 24/7 comparison of experiences and clothes" with other girls online.
The Facebook Deactivation Agreement was his freshman daughter's idea, according to Paul Baier, who adds that he hopes the notion will start a trend among others at the school.
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Under the contract, the dad agrees to pay his daughter $50 in April and $150 in June if she sticks to her word and stays off Facebook for the next 5 months. He even has access to her password, so that he can kill the account (hmmm, maybe Google will pay her another $200 to join Google+?).
Don't get the idea that Mr. Baier is anti-social media either. He spearheaded an effort -- which included a Facebook page -- among frustrated parents in his town over the past couple of years to get the town's school system on the straight and narrow. He also blogs for his company, an energy technology and sustainability firm called Groom Energy. You can find him on Twitter, too (@PaulBaier).
Quitting Facebook isn't unprecedented, despite the number of users that goes up and up and up. (It also isn't necessarily easy to obliterate your Facebook account, though handy guides are everywhere on the Web.)
I had a niece a few years back who dropped Facebook because the drama was getting to be too much for her and even none other than Bill Gates said he quit because keeping up with friend requests became overwhelming.
Most accounts that I've seen about such actions are from older people... typically writers who I suspect see doing so as a good column topic. And then there are less dramatic statements, such as National Unfriend Day, which has been promoted by the likes of talk show host Jimmy Kimmel.
But young Ms. Baier must have her reasons for proposing the Facebook deal to her dad. A nice round $200 to spend on"stuff" is pretty hard to argue with.