I’ve been thinking about this a lot today. Technology for keeping the world connected has come along way. Internet, cell phones, Skype, social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. None of this was around when I was growing up or even in college! Yes I am new to much of this technology and have a lot to learn. I started thinking the other day about life before all of this. Hmm… I noticed three things.
1. Things were sure a lot quieter! You didn’t go to a store or restaurant with people all around you talking to themselves! Most of these places were full of single people shopping (focused on what they were doing) and small groups of quiet people eating in peace (not searching their blackberries for updates). Just today while taking my mom to the doctor we saw a man outside the door pacing back and forth and talking to himself! Then I told her he had a bluetooth device in his ear and he was on the phone. She had thought he was crazy! Things were also a lot quieter in my own mind! I was happy with my own little silly thoughts! I also had my head full of my own thoughts and would never have imagined that I could squeeze in any more, let alone 100’s more! Now my head is buzzing with thoughts about what is going on with the lives of those friends I care about, or the twitter friend I am following and concerned about for the moment!
2. TMI or Overload! I am now active in the above mentioned sites and now know way too much about everyone! Just in one day of checking up on friends through social media sites I find that I have a friend that is going through just about everything life can offer, all in one day! Some days there is too much drama and I try to ignore and run from that! Eek! There is so much everyday living going on and now all in my sight. It seems like there is someone dealing with sadness, anger, happiness, jealousy, fear, triumph, worry, divorce, weddings, death, birth, trauma, trials…the list goes on and on. One second you are excited for something that someone has achieved and are sending congratulations, only to read the next friends post and see that a tragedy has occurred and you are sending your condolences and good wishes. Wow! Sometime it can be downright overwhelming!!!
3. Yes it is definitely worth it to me! I have had sooo many wonderful experiences of reconnecting with old friends and getting to know others better. Opportunities to see family pictures and enjoy special moments with those that live far away! Before this I wouldn’t have seen the up-to-the-moment pics sent from a school activity or work. No one would have taken the time to take pics and mail them out for all of their friends and relatives to see and do this every week! Chances to get together with others when I never had these chances before. I have shared fun times online with family and neighbors who I see in person everyday too! I have met some great new friends from all over the world, that mean the world to me now, and I never would have met them without all of this technology!
Too connected? Yes! Would I want to live without it? No. PS- I think you should know I live with a husband who would never even let us have an answering machine on our home phone. He would say, “If someone needs to talk to me they can call back when I am home later.” He has a work email that he uses for business and that is it! He doesn’t want anyone knowing his business and doesn’t want anyone bugging him! Funny huh!!
What are your experiences, insights or thoughts on technology keeping us connected?