Has your smart phone become an appendage to your hand? When you hear an electronic signal in the vicinity, even if it’s not a familiar sound, do you glance down and check it out? If you don’t receive one of these signals for a while, do you feel no one is thinking of you? If that’s the case, you are probably over communicated.
This is a new form of control by the technologies we thought were our friends. With the specter of AI (Artificial Insanity) we can now let them “think” for us, “write” for us and probably have an APP to burp the baby too!
Put it down, look up and smell the roses of civilized discourse between humans. In an unofficial estimate, at least 7 out of 10 Miamians feel their smart phone is a permanent attachment to their body, like an afternoon Cafecito.
Answer a couple of questions since we are now able to let the world know what we ate at lunch whether they wish to know or not. Do you check your Facebook page/Instagram account/Tik Tok/ Email/ etc, more often than you blink? Is there an unspoken competition among your friends on Facebook to see who can accumulate the most ‘friends’? BTW No one has a thousand or more friends unless you’re a Congressperson and count your lobbyists. Do you feel the need to ‘text back’, answer a Facebook comment or ‘tag’ someone in a picture immediately after receipt? If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, you may be ‘over-communicated’.
This age of (Un) social media has got us on a yoyo. We respond to its stimuli like your pet upon seeing a treat in a take-home bag. At dinner, do you suddenly look up from your phone to notice everyone’s looking in their lap? Has eye contact become as extinct as a thoughtful law enacted in Tallahassee?
Our cell phones call out with a beep or buzz, and we act like one of Pavlov’s dogs. Is this how we ‘connect’ to people? Or ‘un-connect’. In the past we’ve had to tell people to their face that we didn’t like them, now it’s different; we can ‘Un-Friend’. The worst part of that is when you accidentally meet them. How awkward! Here’s a startling statistic, half of all Americans are on Facebook, the other half speak to their friends.
Twitter gives us the opportunity to let others know what we’re doing and where we’re going at any time, instantly. If you feel it’s important to tweet that you’re in line at the grocery store and there’s a ‘buy one get one’ on frozen spinach, then you’re probably dealing with issues about getting picked last for kick ball in elementary school. It’s a throwback to Ancient Egypt when the Pharaohs knew they were the center of the universe and the world revolved around them.
I was told that Linkedin would open my business to so many others with the same interests but all that’s happening is I receive email about the business everyone else is lying about. I’ve got 45 new ‘Linkedin’ friends but no new business.
Do you feel annoyed when ‘Linkedin’ reminds you that you haven’t responded to a request? You haven’t responded because you don’t want to be linked with this person and don’t know how to let them go. It’s not the annoying little brother who won’t leave you alone, it’s the intrusive ‘big brother’ that won’t stop. You really want to tell that bully off, but how?
Join the ‘Un-Connected!’, but really, don’t join. There are no dues, no friends, no meetings and no fees. No clicking, no tweeting, no diversions. It’s the ‘Un-Generation’, a quieter simpler time when you actually get face to face and say ‘Hello’. It’s not a lost art.