Go Talk to Someone!
By Christine Brown, Intern
For the past few days I have been researching and delving into the world that is social media. This research includes looking into what draws people to it and why it has become so popular over the past couple of years. I will be the first one to tell you, I am a huge fan of social media. However, I stumbled upon (no, not using the website) an article by Priscilla Warner, co-author of “The Faith Club”, that talked about how the usage of social media is allowing us to become anti-social. Now, this is not the first time this theory has come to light and it certainly is not going to be the last. In my mass communication class in college, each of the students reflected on how they use different mediums to shy away from other individuals. One way that was mentioned was the awkward elevator ride when both individuals fumble on their cell phones instead of doing the unthinkable, talking to one another. Also, one student brought up how she and her roommate would Facebook chat each other while sitting next to one other instead of talking.
We then discussed the evolution of communication. We all started off talking face to face. Back in the “good old days” they did not have phones. They had to go to one another and actually be in each other’s presence. Then, Alexander Graham Bell created the telephone, which was a huge help and time saver for everyone. After some time, cell phones emerged and one could actually be moving from location to location while chatting on the phone. There still was that verbal communication that made it somewhat personal. One could still hear the others voice at the end of the line. Now, in this day and age, we have texting, email, and different social media outlets. We love all of this. (Ask my parents, they will tell you, I am a text messaging and social networking fiend.)
But what happened to being personal? We shy away from hearing another’s voice and resort to a message that shows up on a screen. So I decided to stop depending on my crutch and I am making an effort to become more social. Instead of texting, I am going to call. If I can see someone in person, well I am going to do it. It is going to be difficult, but it is necessary. I end with a line from Warner’s article, “I will return to social media sites and mingle with the wonderful people I’ve met online, but I will try to be more present in my daily life, as well.” Now, I challenge you all to do the same. Break that barrier and challenge yourself. Step outside of that bubble and go talk to someone!