Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Connected

So I haven't posted to my Blog in a while even though there have been many newsworthy events on a macro as well as a mirco level. I have all this instantaneous technology and yet access doesn't necessarily equal productivity. I have an app on my iPhone that allows me to post to my Blog anytime day or night. I can tell you what I had for breakfast, or about the guy on the subway dressed as Merlin. I have the means to tell you every single nuance of my day. I recently joined Twitter and when I signed on to my page I looked and it and thought "now what?" Seriously, Twitter is a social networking site that wants me to give regular updates in 140 characters or less and will nudge me if I haven't done so in 24 hours? Do you really want to know what I am doing every 15 minutes? Do you really want to track my whereabouts on your iPhone app? I like the parts of the day when you are on your path and I am on mine and unexpectedly our paths cross with no warning, just a moment when the stars align for us to meet.

Don't get me wrong, I have been using social networking sites for a while. I signed up for MySpace a few years ago because my niece was on it and have enjoyed sharing pictures, a Blog and updates with my friends and hearing tidbits from their lives that keep us in touch. I also signed up for Facebook, even though I was sure I couldn't handle more than one site at a time. Of course, I ended up migrating more to Facebook because my iPhone app works better and I could snap pictures of the city and post them to my wall. And now of course I have Twitter along with my app to Tweet, but it remains to be seen how much Tweeting I will be doing.

I am an avid Internet user, take away the TV, but I would be lost without my laptop. I love that I can shoot off a note to my best friend in Germany and she can immediately know I am thinking about her. When we met 19 years ago, it would take weeks to exchange letters with outdated information. Now I can know what's happening in her life and send her my random thoughts whenever I feel like it. Still I would trade my laptop for one of our coffee dates where we solve the problems of the world in the time is takes to drink a cappuccino. But I take what I can get and I am grateful for instant access to the people I love.

Still I can't help but wonder if we are substituting quantity for quality. That we don't get enough face time, so we post, update, message, tweet...every time we think of the people we wish were in front of us. Because no matter how fast I type, an instant message can't replace the sound of my best friend's laughter that rings in my heart and lets me know that I am truly wirelessly connected.

1 comment:

Lainee said...

Ellen-I just adore you, and your thoughts on this! I am there with you, I really enjoy the internet for the same reasons you shared. However, I am also glad that I live in a sweet little hippie town where people (and their dogs-yes I've seen them share with the dog) would rather sit for hours nursing a cup of something delicious enjoying each other instead of staring glassy eyed at a computer screen interacting on facebook etc...Don't get me wrong-those interactions are great, but never a subsitute for the real person! By the way, I still need to come see you!