Technology that has been developed over the past decade is unbelievable. Our society had become mesmerized with such intriguing applications. Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, we all remember the Angry Bird craze... and the list goes on and on. We can't get enough, but what's so enticing in the long run may be hindering our society.
While these apps are entertaining and amusing, they are taking away from our relationships and overall social
Studies show that the average age of children getting their first cell
phones is 8-years-old. In fact, more than 35 percent of children in
second and third grade own cell phones. Thirty-nine percent of children ages 2- to 4-years-old and 52% of kids
ages 5 to 8 have used an iPad, iPhone or similar touch-screen device to
play games, watch videos or use other apps, according to a survey by Common Sense Media. The irony is that these kids are becoming more versed in texting lingo than they are in
proper English and face-to-face conversations.
People are beginning to agonize with the thought of in-person conversations of any
kind, or even talking on the phone. Social media and texting are
replacing the telephone and face-to-face conversations. It’s less
intimidating to text someone or drop a line via Facebook or LinkedIn messaging, than it is
to actually hear a voice or, heaven forbid, look someone in the eye. If
someone is shy or doesn’t want to sound awkward over the phone, they can
send a text and have a similar conversation in written form, where
answers don’t have to be “on the spot.” I agree, texting provides a level of convenience,
but the fact is much of today’s new technology is threatening to make extinct what used
to be innate social interaction skills.
Texting lacks personality and emotion. We all have used the little smiley faces to imply happiness but at the same time we are not
emoting over the phone. We are digressing from what makes our
personality unique. We’re losing cherished
opportunities to practice in-person interactions that might help us to
become more comfortable in meeting new people or interviewing for jobs. Saying “whatever” through
text can mean everything from “I’m cool with that” to “I'm upset with you, don't talk to me.” It’s repugnant that fights even occur over emotionless text conversations when, in fact, the entire problem was probably a misunderstanding.
When I think of all the forms of communication at my disposal, I can’t help but believe that the key is in “balance”. Each communication tool has a unique benefit, and when applied appropriately can
provide significant value. However, remember to make an effort to
ensure that the tools are being used properly and not being abused.