Escape the clutches of social networks

Nothing going on, one-sided terms and conditions, giant beasts of the internet dominating everything, wasted time: There are a few good reasons to say goodbye to social networks. The only thing is that it is often not easy to accomplish as the settings are usually well hidden. This blog shows you where they are in Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

It takes no time at all to create a profile on a social network. But when it comes to removing it, well, it can be anything than straightforward. This is because only a few services put the delete option where you’d expect – in the account settings or under the profile information. The rest send you off on a clicking mission, where you have to root through hidden submenus. On top of that, your account is usually only “deactivated” in the first instance. This means it is not deleted immediately, but put on some kind of hold so that if you log in again within a certain timeframe, you can continue using the service. “The various platforms each have their own completely different rules as to how you go about deleting a profile,” explains Florian Glatzner, spokesperson for Surfer haben Rechte [Surfers Have Rights] from Germany’s Voice of the Consumer association vzbz. He adds that “sometimes all it takes is a click, whereas in other instances you first need to verify your identity such as by providing a copy of your ID.” Read on to learn what the current process is with Facebook, Twitter, Google+.

How to delete your Facebook account

In your Facebook profile, click the little triangle on the top right. Click “Settings”, followed by “Your Facebook Information” in the left column. Now click “Delete Your Account and Information” followed by “Delete My Account”. Enter your password, click “Continue”, and then click “Delete Account”.

Tip: Alternatively, you can skip straight to the account deletion function here: https://www.facebook.com/help/delete_account

Now enter your Facebook password and the string displayed in the reCAPTCHA challenge. Click “OK”. By clicking “OK” again, you confirm that you want to permanently delete your Facebook account. After 14 days, your account will be toast.

Be aware that if you want to cancel the deletion of your account, log back in to your Facebook account within 14 days and click “Cancel Deletion”.

 

How to delete your Twitter account

Login in to Twitter. Click your profile picture on the top right and then click “Settings and privacy”. At the bottom of the next page, click “Deactivate your account”. Ignore the notice that wants to prevent you from deleting your account. Instead, click “Deactivate”. Now all that you need to do is enter your password and click “Deactivate account”. Your Twitter account is now history.

Be aware that you have 30 days in which to change your mind – to do so, simply log back in to Twitter.

 

How to delete your Google+ account

Log in to Google. Click your profile picture on the top right and then click “Google Account”. On the right-hand side, click “Delete your account or services” followed by “Delete Google Account and data”. If necessary, log back in and click “Next”. Click to confirm any checkboxes and then click “DELETE ACCOUNT”. In contrast to other social networks, the deletion process cannot be undone.

 

This post is also available in: German