Friday, November 12, 2010

On Connectivity: Facebook, Twitter, & Everything In-between

My dear friend, Larissa of The Ella Project, wrote a brilliant piece on technology and how it allows us to be too connected without actually connecting. You see, we live in an age where we are all Facebook and Twitter babies. We exist behind a series of emoticons and "like" buttons; retweets and hashtags.

Personally, I'm okay with it. I hate talking on the phone unless I'm talking to my mother. Why? Because I am convinced I can NEVER hear anything you say. When I get confused I just say "okay" or laugh in hopes that you'll think I know what you're saying instead of having to ask "wait, WHAT?" for the 5th time. Especially living in New York City, where people are shouting expletives on the street and ambulance sirens are the normal background noise. Why go through the "one second, a police car is going by"when I could just text you a simple "see you in 5."

This mystery gchat couldn't have come at a better time.
Moreover, I love a good emoticon conversation. When words get in the way, there's nothing like a quick emoticon stink eye or wink face to get straight to the point. And a hot, smoking poop instead of a civilized "no thank you." in an email? I'll take it.

That said, there is something so necessary about human to human contact. Larissa notes:
There is something about human contact. Something about actually hearing someone laugh rather than see an “lol”. [...] Let’s meet each other for drinks, dinner, laughter and hugs.
Wait! Lets! Because a well wishing tweet or the happiest of emoticons can never give across the same feeling as a hug. There is a reason why we say things like "I have the greatest story for you, let's catch up over drinks or dinner." And there is nothing like seeing those reactions in your friend's eyes as you tell it.

So, where do you draw the line? Apparently, it's getting blurrier as we get further in to this technologically advanced world we live in.

AM New York felt it was front page worthy to note that more and more people are getting the axe from their employer due to writing inappropriate things about their bosses or jobs online. This generation of kids growing up on twitter are learning to express themselves in 140 characters or less. When I grew up, I couldn't leave the dinner table before talking in full paragraphs about my day and finishing all the broccoli on my plate.

There must be some middle ground. I feel lucky enough to know where to find my plateau. It starts with some cosmopolitans at Pazza Notte and my favorite girlfriends telling those great stories that we save for the reactions.

Where's yours?

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