Antisocial networking

I have talked about technology before and the mention of it in my writing.  What social media is concerned, I am extremely lucky.  I can’t actually mention these sites at all, as my current novel takes place in a time where social media doesn’t really exist yet.  But even if it had, I don’t know whether I would.  You see, nothing ages faster than a technology reference that tells the reader exactly how old a novel really is.         

At first, what my own experience was concerned, I quite liked the so-called “enrichment” in our ability to keep in touch with people all over the world via social networking.  I still like the concept of staying in touch with my family and friends in different countries, watching their videos and browsing their photos of holidays, family and food.  For this reason it still has its merits.

However, social networking has become increasingly antisocial in my view, for two reasons.

One – the convenience of smart phones has made it so easy to check a social media site at, let’s face it, times when one really shouldn’t, e.g. before properly waking up, at the dinner table or while in conversation with someone “real”.

Two – without us seeing it coming, it has become a substitute for actual human interaction.  How often have you gone to a party, where at least one person asked you about a handful of things that you had recently done?  Not because you had told them, but because your social media site reflected these activities.  And what gets me is that you would have no idea that it was actually read by someone.  I have to admit, I too am at fault, as so many of us are.  But these days, I consciously try to make the decision to acknowledge something I like on social media and to let a person know that I’ve read it.  Or better yet, I might contact them in other ways, soon to be out of vogue, like face-to-face contact or contact via a phone.  Remember those?

The irony of it all is that as I write this post, I am fully aware that as soon as I am finished, I will post a link to this article on all the social media worlds that I am part of.  I am pretty sure that some of my connections will read it, but in all reality, I’ll probably have to access Google Analytics to find out.