Why Socially (un)Acceptable?

As a 21-year old college student, I already feel as though I am falling behind the times in terms of social media.  I don’t have a MySpace or a Twitter account, and this is my first blog.  I will, however, admit to being an avid Facebook user.  This blog is called Socially (un)Acceptable because of my feelings toward social media.  how and why is it that our society has moved away from in-person communication and gravitated toward electronic communication?  I miss the personal aspect of looking someone in the eye, watching their body language and hearing the tone in their voice of in-person communication.  I struggle with how much online media has become its own culture and wonder why we are so attached to our online communities–I have friends who won’t leave their room until they have checked up on their virtual farm, cleaned their virtual fish tank and made sure that all the virtual customers in their online restaurant have been fed and taken care of.  At what point does an online community go from an acceptable place to socialize to an unacceptable overdose of imaginary reality?

As you can see in the image from the Kaiser Family Foundation, children today are spending an incredible amount of time online and with other forms of technology.  When I was younger, I spent my afternoons playing in the back yard with friends and every summer evening was spent playing hide-and-go-seek with the neighborhood kids until our parents called us in.  We wonder why today’s children have an obesity problem.  With the upswing of technology use, it is no wonder that internet marketing is so popular.

This may be a very personal (and strong) opinion, but today’s children need to get outside, take in the fresh air, use their imaginations and learn how to interact with one another without the mask of a computer screen.  I am honestly scared for the future of our world as our culture leans more on the internet and television.  Please take a moment to watch the video, “Did you Know” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jpEnFwiqdx8) and see if it impacts you as much as it affected me.

I also recommend checking out http://news.cnet.com/8301-19518_3-10438088-238.html for more information on children’s social media and technology use.  It’s a very interesting piece.

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3 Comments »

  1. I must admit i am one of those who must check their virtual cafe. But i think that since I tend to have more free time than most adults that plays a major role in it. Not to mention it is so addicting.

  2. I can relate to knowing people that are on their computers all day instead of interacting to people face to face. It can be frustrating. However, it also can bring people together. My oldest sister lives across the country and having different ways to stay in touch with her has been the best thing.

  3. once again, good points made by all. I’ve heard a lot of people express concerns about their friends and family members neglecting their jobs and families because their online farm… uh… exists. Social networking sites have found amazing ways to get you to spend inordinate amounts of time doing essentially nothing. you know those stupid facebook notifications that tell you a friend answered a question about you? yeah, it’s just a series of prefabricated questions that have nothing to do with anything… but i spent about 20 minutes answering questions before i realized i had wasted my time… CURSE YOU, FACEBOOK! indeed, lindsay makes a good point that the primary function of social networking sites is to keep in touch with people, but i don’t even know what facebook IS anymore… it’s gotten to the point that i need to tell people in person that i don’t want to play mafia wars.

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