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Social Disconnect Essay

1321 words - 6 pages

Social Disconnect
When you are desperately in need to get in touch with someone concerning an urgent matter that cannot wait for a response, what is the first thing you do? You text them. How many times have you gotten into an argument with someone about a text, or even better a tagged Facebook picture? Remember back when you had to talk to someone face to face and ask them about their lives in order to get to know them, before everyone could be researched? Technology is meant to make our lives easier, which it has, but this easier way of living has come with its own set of difficulties, obstacles and misunderstandings.
Technology has been forever evolving since the beginning of mankind. ...view middle of the document...

Now people can meet the person sitting across from them without saying a word.
Cell phones have also given birth to one of the most popular forms of communication among young people, texting. “More text messages are sent by phone than phone calls” (New Generation of Communication: Texting versus Talking). Texting poses problems on many levels. Again, it eliminates the human factor of communication, leading to all types of misunderstandings. For example, a text that reads, “I hate you,” could be taken as a joke or could be serious. If these words were spoken, there would be no question about its meaning because of its accompanying voice inflection, facial expression, and body language. These key elements of communication are absent from virtually all forms of electronic communication. Furthermore, the newer generations are being raised on this kind of technology. Kids are not learning how to communicate with people face-to-face, a skill acquired by practice. More importantly, texting can be a very big distraction when you’re too into your conversation to be aware of your surroundings. “A Harvard study indicated that cell phone users are 4 to 5 times more likely to be involved in auto accidents than non-users” (Most Americans Want to Ban Text Messaging While Driving).
This onslaught of social networking outlets has also impacted the amount of people you see hanging out and being social in physical settings. I can remember summer days growing up in Brooklyn when the streets were filled with people going nowhere and doing nothing more than hanging out, playing basketball, walking and talking with friends, and going out to do things. Now that we’ve eliminated the need for face-to-face contact in order to keep in touch with somebody relationships aren’t as strong. No one spends quality time with each other like we used to. Outside of dating, I cannot remember the last time I went with friends to see a movie, or go bowling, or go out to eat. I cannot remember the last time I went to somebody’s house to simply hangout because I wanted to have a conversation with someone. Now, it’s as simple as clicking their name. No quality time required.
I believe this also leads to the crippling of people from different backgrounds coming together. We are no longer spending time with one another and interacting face-to-face, it is becoming more and more difficult to facilitate dialogues between people with different backgrounds, leading to the vast amount of unwarranted hate between people. The very design of the social networking site contributes to this. The purposes of social networking sites are to connect people with similar interests or backgrounds. While it is good to know people who share something in common with you, it is even more valuable to establish a connection with someone you have very little in common with; just someone you share a good...

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