Dear Sherry Turkle,
In your introduction to Alone Together you ask the question “Does virtual intimacy degrade our experience of the other kind and, indeed of all encounters of any kind?” This was very interesting along with many of the other aspects you touched on. I agree with you when you talked about how technology acts as a substitute for face-to-face interaction. Clearly today people of all ages now use smartphones and computers more than ever for many of our daily tasks. It’s also true that many people choose to text and send email as opposed calling or meeting in person. A lot of people in today’s society figure we have the technology to do these things so why go through the trouble of communicating in “real time.”
I disagree with you however when you describe how people can feel when technology doesn’t satisfy every need and has you feeling “isolated.” The only people that can feel this way are the ones who have let this technology take over their lives. Most people who utilize technology in this way do it because it helps make their lives easier. People have things to do along with daily tasks, which are accomplished with help of technology like email. Those who find themselves feeling alone have chose to use technology to their disadvantage. Just because I have 900 friends on Facebook doesn’t mean I have that many in real life and I realize this fact. I know who my actual friends are because I see them in person. Certain individuals who spend their lives on Myspace or in a virtual community all day tend not to go out into the real world very often. They become fixated on their virtual lives, which at that point can only lead to negative feelings.