My neck hurts. Why you say? Because I’m always craning down looking at my cell phone or iPod. I’m texting, posting, clicking and twirling.Technology is fabulous isn’t it? I love listening to my favorite tunes, knowing what the temperature will be, where my friends are and the news of the day. I can even watch videos and movies while I do my laundry.
But as I walk around the city and see others with their necks bent too it makes me wonder if having constant access to information and entertainment is really such a good thing. Wow, okay I can’t believe I just wrote that, but I need to question our attachment to technology because we are gradually becoming socially inept because of it. Some of us are even becoming more rude and mean due to the freedom that texting and posting to social sites can bring.
When we read news articles or listen to music or watch videos online we are often afforded the opportunity to post our opinions about what we’ve consumed. Reading the comments are sometimes more entertaining than the subject because they are truly reflective of what we’re becoming as a society. Most people express thought provoking and even humorous opinions that actually add to the discussion intelligently. It is troubling though to see comments that are filled with racist, sexist and derogatory views and I wonder whether these people are sitting next to me in the movie theater or ringing up my groceries.
When we do shut our computers down and leave the house we often feel naked without our cell phones. I recently went out to lunch with a good friend and both of us probably looked more at our cell phone screens than each other. Neither one of us meant any harm and I know for a fact that we were very happy to be in each other’s company, but technology was a constant interruption.
Another pet peeve of mine is the lack of detail we now convey in our writing. I have never seen so many misspellings and made up words due to the space constraints of texting and posting to sites. Twitter with its 140 character limit challenges the tweeter to express their thoughts in as few words as possible and that leads people to shorten and even obliterate words altogether. I am even guilty of substituting numbers (2/to, 4/for) for words to save space.
Technological advances have allowed us to work more efficiently, communicate quicker and bridge long distances. We are definitely better for it. But, we must remember the advantages of truly being social, which means speaking to one another in person from time to time, traveling and experiencing different cultures and touching others with our physical embraces.
Social media is meant to enhance our communications skills. Technology is soulless, but we aren’t. We will become so though if we allow gadgets and toys to totally rule our world. So the next time you’re tempted to text, pick up the phone or visit the person instead. We all need that personal touch that a text can never give us.
© 2010 – 2014, TamekaMullins. All rights reserved.
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