Posts tagged ‘offline’

World Wide Warning

An acquaintance of mine got a passive aggressive note passed to him by a stranger in the tube. A world wide warning. That the internet is evil and that you should appreciate live music, paintings in galleries and conversations in the flesh.
Bullshit.
I have a magic device in my hands as I write these lines, that allows me to listen to obscure African metal bands I could only listen to live if I invested a ludicrous amount of money (and time) to travel to some African country or another, while chatting with people on the other side of the globe and looking at paintings from the great masters, which I – again – would have to spend ludicrous amounts of money (and time) to gain access to. Carrying on my kindle an entire library worth of books, with no added weight. All while riding the metro. Or bus. Or sitting on the toilet.
Whoever thinks that only live encounters with art and people are worthwhile must lead a pretty boring (and/or expensive) lifestyle. Heading from encounter to encounter, with vast stretches of nothing in between.
Hey Mr. In-the-flesh, take your world wide warning and take it with you in your warm filthy hipster holes. I believe I have seen more than you did.

Take off the nostalgia goggles of times before you were born, those times had their shit sides too. (Coldwar, anyone?)

Take care,
A.

Look up…or not.

When ever new technology or a new idea was introduced into a society, it caused turmoil.

It caused “old school” folks to prophesy doom. Always!
Look it up. Broad writing and reading skills introduced? “Young people can’t memorize things anymore. Society will be ruined.”
New vehicles going faster than 30 km/h? “A human body can’t take that velocity (for long). We’re doomed!”
TV? “It kills imagination. Kids don’t go outside anymore.”

And while it is true that video killed the radiostar (Artist over Art), the majority of these fears were unjustified and unwarranted.

So why on earth do social media and smartphones/Tablets(/GoogleGlass?) ruin our society?
Easy. They don’t.

Yes, Facebook, google+ and other social networks aren’t the same as talking with your friends, acquaintances and relatives in real life. But you ARE interacting with another human being (somewhere)!
You might not know any of your bazillion friends personally, but you do know them sort of. You are interacting with (some of) them on a daily basis.
From some 50 years ago up until recently (and still) people sat in busses and trams and subways with newspapers, or books, not interacting with anyone.
Just reading.

I’m a book buff myself, but if you break it down, sitting in the subway and reading a book is more antisocial than sitting there Fecesbooking someone!
Before you are an antisocial asshole not noticing people around you or anywhere else other than inside your head, keep your head down on that little screen.

Young people have social interactions with peers.
Period.
You don’t have to mingle with some one you might know well, but don’t like their hobbies and views on things, just because they are your age group and in your class. You communicate with people you get along with well. And if they are half a globe away – so what?

The entire “You are antisocial” campaign is a money thing people. Shelf that shit right away as a passing trend. New technology, new trends, new ideas have always brought forth the ones who felt uncomfortable with it, or just couldn’t get it.

Some day down the road I too will say that this new shit will ruin our society, because, let’s face it people, I’m not getting any younger, and my comfort zone will be broken. When you get a digital lens that connects with the internet and allows you to be online 24/7 even in your sleep, I will opt-out. But my son, or my grandchildren, probably won’t.
Remember what our parents said about the new things we had as kids and teens? Right. Now think about your stance on the current technology.

Don’t let the fad of some people who want to seem edgy, cool and rebellious, while at the same time being conservative -ish fool you. Although you might have 4.000.621 friends on facebook, and not know a single one of them personally, you have contacts. You are NOT alone.
And if you feel down and blue, and in desperate need of personal interaction, there are people around you. Go to a pub, a sports event, there are colleagues and relatives.
It ain’t that hard, but don’t jump the train of stupid.

Take care, and talk to each other at least once in a while.
A.