Posted Apr 7, 2011 in Tech | 0 Comments

The Telephone.

Don’t worry, I’m not about to write another song about it.  It’s tired right?  What’s even more funny – so is the device.  I mean, how much do we actually use the actual telephone anymore?  WWW… – that’s the new telephone.  Members of generation ‘Z’, I’m going to ask you a question:  what is a landline?  Do any of you remember the fax machine? (*a show of hands please.)  It makes me laugh.  You can send a message on a piece of paper through a telephone landline to another telephone landline where another piece of paper would print a copy of that message on paper.  Genius.  Archaic maybe?  But genius.  We no longer live in the stone age of technology and have advanced so quickly; so rapidly it seems that we can perform both tasks, and maintain relationships without any actual human contact.

Email. Your grandparents even have it.  A business would be crippled without it.  It’s a fast and efficient way to deliver an important message or a candid response to a conversation without meeting in person or picking up a phone.  It is the definition of thought and communication micromanagement.  What’s great about it?  We can do more.  We can play more.  We communicate more.  What’s awful about it – the send button.  Better say what you mean and mean what you say before that message is delivered.  Once sent, that message is not only irreversible, it’s no longer your property and it’s a permanent record of hand delivered evidence.  As impersonal as an email message is, it can be fucking personal in the wrong hands.

The Text. The invention of the devil himself – and a guilty pleasure for all.  It’s an addiction, and it’s the most inhuman, impersonal form of communication on planet earth. So I want to meet up with friends, relay a message to my significant other, or if I want to communicate discreetly to another colleague during a business meeting – it’s a great way to pass the time and a great way to keep in touch.  However, like alcohol, if you are going to text, text responsibly.  Don’t drink and drive, don’t text and drive, don’t drink and text.  Any combination of the three should be law, sadly the third is a misdemeanor – lo and behold the consequences on any given Sunday morning.

So why is texting so bad?  Is it lazy?  I say yes.  Do I love it?  Dude, #guiltypleasure!  It’s the easiest way to hold a conversation without ‘hello’ or ‘goodbye’.  You never have to respond promptly to a text.  You never have to reply to a text.  You never have to worry about letting someone go from a conversation because your service provider that covers the entire western hemisphere failed to deliver, (or deliver timely), that one message.  A text message gives you time to think.  It allows you to communicate without communication.  You don’t even have to make complete words or complete sentences, or even make sense.  So is texting impersonal?  Absolutely.  (Also, on an alternative note – if the devil didn’t invent the ‘text message’, it had to have been a thought up by some guy with the nickname ‘Player’.)

Social Media. You know it’s impersonal.  We make plans, we join ‘groups’ in arm-chair “cyber-support”, we set innuendos in our status updates, we spend hours a day on there.  The biggest extrovert can be introverted, and the biggest introvert is an extrovert.  So why do we spend so much time following the lives of people we know, people we’ve known, people we think we know, or family for that matter without actual interpersonal communication?  I can think of one reason and one reason only.  Technology has made the world impersonal and no one wants to pick up the fucking phone.

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