Monday, January 30, 2012

The Effects of Technology

Dear Ms. Turkle,
I agree with your article Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less From Each Other that humans nowadays rely too much on technology.  We have become dependent on (and almost obsessed with) technology so much that it has replaced meeting people in person.  Texting has replaced real conversations and we are now able to do several things at once and put people on hold.  Although technology allows us to multi-task, it also takes up a lot of our time as people are glued to their phones.  Technology has also contributed to our laziness- people would now rather text someone who is within walking distance than just find them and talk to them in person.  It has connected people in so many ways but has also created boundaries between people as well.  

A part of the article that stood out to me is when you told the story of the thirteen year old who hates the phone and voice mail, and prefers texting over it all.  My favorite quote is when you said, “She is a modern Goldilocks: for her, texting puts people not too close, not too far, but at just the right distance.”  I certainly agree with this quote because I enjoy texting and being able to control my own pace and response time, and see talking on the phone as a disadvantage.  I think a lot of teens would agree with this statement as well because talking on the phone requires a lot of effort and time, whereas texting has become a convenience- you answer when you are ready and able.   

Texting is the ultimate way to keep people around, but keep them at an arms’ length in a distance you are comfortable with.  Facebook and Twitter is a perfect example of how we gather people and place them under our wings, but choose who we personally want to interact with.  Technology has turned our lives into a numbers game, and the more people we collect, the better we feel about ourselves.  This makes me think back to the olden days before texting, tweeting, and Facebooking were invented, and how real relationships were made.  Sadly, I don’t think things will ever be that simple again, and as time goes on, it will become further complicated.        

Connie Zhen

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