Sunday, June 12, 2011

4 Reason I Hate Social Media

Now don't get me wrong. I love technology. Love it. While I'm not an early adopter by any stretch of the imagination (I just got a smart phone in March) but I'm not a luddite either. I love that we have ways to reach out to people, learn an infinite number of new things every day, and can look up new and exciting things to do on any given day.


I hate technology. And here is my list of reasons why:

1. Social media (mainly Facebook and Twitter) has an amazing way of making me feel excluded. I can see everything everyone else is doing. Everything I wasn't invited to. And while my social life is far from empty (I rarely have a free night), it stings sometimes to see things that I wasn't invited to. I can only imagine how much more damaging this could have been in junior high or high school, to see sleep overs and parties to which I was not invited, because it's somewhat damaging now when I have a healthy self esteem.

2. Facebook and Twitter often bring out the most annoying sides of people's personalities. These social media outlets have given people a way to be more narcissistic than they normally are. They post millions of pictures of themselves, taken from an arm length's away, write "statuses" complaining about problems that aren't problems, and have a forum to vent all of their political, religious, and personal beliefs. (The irony of blogging about this is not lost on me.)

3. With the advent of smart phones, most people have become slaves to technology. They're like zombies, walking around with a small, touchscreen device in their hands. (I jokingly call my little sister's phone her "connection portal.") People are so plugged in that they feel lost without their phone. It's really frustrating to try to have a conversation with a person who is texting, checking Facebook, or tweeting, but it's more frustrating that it's become normal to constantly be holding four or five conversations at once (virtually and IRL).

4. It's so time consuming. I can't even estimate how many hours a week I'm on Facebook, reading my google reader, or checking out the Twitter world. But I do know that it could easily take over my life if I wasn't careful. And I do know that it has taken over other people's lives time and time again. Also, it's incredibly time consuming to manage my online profile. In the past, all I had to worry about was if I looked presentable and wasn't a socially awkward person. Now I have to worry about that, as well as if my statuses/tweets are in line with the online persona I've worked so hard to create. Do my "Facebook beliefs" match my "real life beliefs?" Do I admit that I love watching terrible television and eating peanut butter m&m's on a 70 degree day? Or would that make me look like a fat kid who doesn't play outside? See? Complicated and time consuming.

Does this mean that I'm going to cancel my Facebook, delete my Twitter, get a flip phone, and clear out my Google Reader tomorrow? No. Not even close. Because I love technology. But this does mean that I'm going to care less about my phone, my facebook page, and my twitter account. Because I have better things to worry about than if someone invited me out or what people really think about Sarah Palin.

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