The creation of Arpanet on 1969 marked the beginning of technology as we know it today. Over the years, technology has developed, and its controversy has enlarged. With the creation of social media, video games and online sites, the argument has always been: are we really more connected or is technology making us feel more alone? While it is helping in many areas of modern life, it is also creating a society without interpersonal skills, making communication more difficult in face to face encounters. Instead of finding a balance between the online and physical world, young generations are more concerned about likes and comments than hugs and kisses. Even though we are so linked, we feel more alone than ever before.
From text messages and phone calls to banking and business, we can virtually do everything with our phones. Research has deemed that the average American spends at least two and a half hours using an online mobile device every day. Communication is essential in life and depending too much on our phones has created a serious problem in our social skills. Powerful and portable, cellphones have become the number one tool for interaction in between friends and family. However, sending text messages is preferred by many people rather than face to face human interactions. As a result, we have lost the ability to maintain an entertaining old-fashioned conversation or even make proper eye contact with a second party, so in reality are we united or separated by technology?
Additionally, self-image plays a big role in our lives and technology has managed to make us not feel the best we can. Due to the high impact that some people with perfect pictures can have in our lives, we may not only feel insecure, but also become lonelier. Studies have found a connection between social media and high levels of depression. For example, after spending hours behind the screen wondering how you could be that other person, we share a post on a social networking site that it is expected to get as many likes and comments as the people we look up to. In that case, the dream never comes true, and consequently we believe that we no longer have a place in the modern world, where numbers tell us who we are.
Modern life and its advances can have an extremely positive impact if balanced correctly. For instance, if we take into consideration how quickly we can access and share information compared to fifty or sixty years ago, we can say technology has helped develop the world much faster and efficiently. On the other hand, certain social media platforms have made it easy to abuse and more difficult to control how much time we spend “connected”. Studies suggest to “use a stopping rule”. The rule is based on the idea that we are in control and not what’s behind the screen. Parents should manage their children’s use of the network by making chores, family and other priorities come first. Therefore, for the better of future generations, we all have to work together to find a way to balance life and technology and at the same time readopt the sense of humanity we have lost in the past years, that’s making us selfish and antisocial.
As an adult, interacting with others can be sometimes difficult, and even boring. In fact, topics are exhausted quickly because instead of paying attention to our surroundings, we are too focused on our devices. Overall, we think sending a text message is much faster than visiting a friend or family and we might be right but in reality, the ability to see someone personally will make us feel connected and not as lonely as technology is currently making us.
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