Social media: a status update
October 3, 2010 by Brittany Tiplady
The halls of Kwantlen have no lack of social-media-frenzied students.
Somehow, between living and breathing, eating and sleeping, another aspect of life necessary to survival was added to the human race. Survival is no longer the primal simplicity that is lost in history textbooks, but an evolution of not only technology, but communication.
Have you noticed that people do not speak anymore? A person-to-person conversation is not kept between the lips, but thereafter spread by fingers tapping furiously on keyboards, cell phones, smart phones, iPads and — gasp — perhaps in a telephone call.
Words are spread through cyberspace, made public on Facebook and Twitter. Friday night plans are advertised on your Facebook status, and kept updated on your Twitter, and the photo taken by your iPhone is no longer a moment captured just for you, but uploaded onto the Internet so that your friends can “like” and comment and re-tweet, so that you can feel connected. Or, perhaps so that others can be jealous, or more appropriately, envious.
Cell phones aren’t just for convenient and portable communication, they’re plastic, micro-chipped, universal lifelines. iPhones, and Blackberries are an added bionic body part attached to peoples’ hands, sitting in purses or backpacks, pockets-buzzing, beeping, and ringing. Because even when you’re alone, you’re really nowhere near isolation, because that piece of plastic in your hand has the entire world compacted inside.
Blackberry Messenger isn’t an easier way to stay connected. Who are we kidding? It’s another reason to add stress, gossip and anxiety to your already caffeine-reliant life (which will also reflect on your Twitter update), because when your boyfriend reads your bbm but doesn’t answer, yet he’s on Facebook chat (which means he has to have checked his phone right?), you’re going to text your best friend, and most likely stare at that checkmark on your screen, and wait until that vibration gives you the answer you’ve been holding your breath for.
Love is no longer shown through rosy cheeks, nervous tongues and wide eyes. Love is now a plastic keyboard and human attention to a text message. And heaven forbid your crush posts photos with someone of the opposite sex, making sexy, eat-your-heart-out faces for the camera. Intimacy has somehow made a viral change from personal connection to words from keyboards, and sent flying through Internet waves, so in a matter of hours, maybe minutes, your circle of friends — and possibly a few foes — are made aware of your newest endeavor, your latest secret and what you’re having for lunch.
Maybe this sounds exaggerated. Maybe you’re one of those who chooses to stray from the addictions of social networking, and keep your business in simplistic proportions. It doesn’t matter because, everyone else around you isn’t.
Here lies the question: are we living?
If you have to have your smart phone beside you at all times, Facebook open on your laptop and your Twitter stream constantly scanned, I’d say you aren’t. You aren’t breathing air, you’re breathing cyber fumes, shared by the majority of the world’s population,.
Before we all know it, we’ll all be dead before the next status update.