People say we’re getting closer. We can turn on our computers or phones and instantly be able to speak to anyone from around the world. We can phone everyone, we can see them on webcam, we can read what everyone we know is thinking on twitter, tumblr etc and interact with them all on facebook. Very little is personal anymore. All the world is becoming one giant community shouting their thoughts and hoping people notice.
Yet, despite all this, people are becoming more hermitical. They hide away in their rooms and tweet about their lives to their friends, when they could be seeing them. They go through horrendous depression while people who can help them are watching them post memes. They have hundreds or thousands of facebook “friends” but spend time with none of them. These are not friends. They are statistics. A status symbol. It is possible we are seeing the first generation of people who are truly addicted to social networking. And look at the rewards: there has been a steep rise in this country alone in the number of suicides and cases of depression.
A columnist in New York noted that social networking has made us “accustomed to a new way of being alone together”. Think about human communication in itself. It’s not all about the words. Most of what we communicate is non verbal. Albert Mehrabian proved in the late 1960’s that 55% of communication is non verbal, 38% is in the tone of your voice, while just 7% is the words. How can you be friends with someone and really bond with them when you’re only recieving 7% of the message?
When all you have is a group of cyber friends that you don’t meet and you never leave the sanctuary of your bedroom, is it any wonder depression is much higher than it used to be? Interestingly on the whole depression rates are much lower in third world countries than in the west. An author on the subject once spoke of Yvette Vickers, a B movie star who was found dead at 83, months after her death. Her computer still running, time of death unknown, her only friends online and none of them caring enough to notice she was gone.
Maybe it’s time we all started unplugging more regularly and embraced real interaction once more. Before we all end up so addicted to technology that a power cut can induce mass suicide.
Claudio, you’re every girls dream…..and nightmare
Artwork associated with my book!
It’s round about two in the morning when I stop off at a petrol station just outside of York, to gather my thoughts. As petrol stations go it’s a pretty battered looking place. Whether or not it even has petrol seems to come and go judging by the crudely…
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Keith Buckley. Ben. And Keith Buckleys beard
Hey there Andy Williams! And i appear to of lost my eyes
Just chillin with Every Time I Die