There once was a time where you could say to your friend “Ok, I’ll meet you outside McDonalds at 11 on Saturday morning”. You’d then go to McDonalds at 11 on Saturday morning, wait for them to turn up, and if they didn’t then you’d just go home to await Monday morning’s fall out at registration where you could ask them where the effing hell they were at 11 on Saturday morning.
There were times where you could walk down the street to the sounds of birdsong, children’s laughter and rusty old car brakes without telling anyone else where you were, who you were with or why something #toteshilare happened. There was also a time where there was no such thing as “Photos of Me <3” being permanently thrust into our eyes at any given opportunity, showing groups of friends pouting with one outstretched arm holding a camera.
Alas, welcome to the digital age, where all of the above is now practically impossible. Come and see the BBM-ers, the Tweeters, the Facebookers, and all the rest in between. We’re all guilty of it, and I’m certainly not judging, I am one of the worst offenders, texting one person whilst checking my emails at the same time as posting an Instagram photo onto twitter that sends automatic posts to my facebook, just in case I’ve missed anyone who might care VERY slightly about a photo of my new shoes.
I recently signed up to Pinterest, (which you had to be INVITED onto!!!) and as far as I can gather, it’s basically just putting photos up and writing something about it on some kind of moodboard. Y’know, like what you used to use your real life bedroom wall for, but instead on the internet, for the entire world to see. I’m also on LinkedIn, which seems to be some sort of social network that pretends to be about jobs, but actually just seems to be a way to see how well the losers and bruisers from your high school are doing now…
It seems these days we’re just living inside a giant techno bubble, where everything and everyone can be accessed from your phone, computer, tablet, netbook and iThings. Where you’re at dinner with one friend whilst texting another friend about how she won’t shut up about her new boyfriend at the same time as checking-in on facebook as “Having the bestest catch up with my lovely friend”. We then go home after dinner, park ourselves on the sofa and watch EastEnders on Sky+ as we tweet our shock at whatever the hell is going on with Speidi on Celebrity Big Brother. When that’s all over, we’ll climb into bed with the laptop and sit on YouTube for an hour watching videos of dogs falling over, and wondering if there’s an App specifically for videos of dogs falling over, until we eventually fall asleep to dream about Speidi tweeting about dogs falling over. Don’t get me wrong, I love videos of dogs falling over, but I can’t help but think that all this technology is taking over our lives to provide us with meaningless information and a million different ways of showing the same people what you ate for breakfast. There has to be more to all of this technology than just doing surveys of your favourite celebrity couples and the like (Speidi win, obv).
I challenge you to spend a day without your phones, emails, Skype, Facebook and WhatsApp and go back just a few years when none of this madness really existed. I know that technology is amazing, and without it we’d all be cavemen who had no idea what ROFL meant or what size shoe Robert Pattinson wears (thanks Wikipedia), but maybe we all need to take a step back before we become just talking faces on a screen falling through the existence of time, simply typing to each other like zombified robots until our faces become emoticons and we speak only in abbreviations…
Seriously though, I mean, Speidi, WTF?