8 December 2013
Cheers howled and glasses clang together on a wintery night at MickDuff’s, one of the local breweries. Laughs were being had around our table, stories being shared, and the excitement of seeing old familiar faces over Christmas break filled within all of us. Suddenly, a phone begins to vibrate violently on the table top. Our phones all grouped together and face down. We all understand the consequence if one of us decides to check our phone. That person will be paying the tab. Then, it happens. Someone breaks and reaches for their phone. Sighs of relief are let out and we all follow suit, grabbing our phones. A dead silence follows. I am checking an ongoing group discussion through an app called “MessageMe.” The two people who had chimed in on the app I am actually sitting at the table with. The others at the table are on Facebook or playing a game on their phone. There is no denying that for this brief moment which felt like a silent eternity, we all succumbed to the zombification of social media. I can’t help but ask myself, what the hell is social media doing to us? Is social media killing the actual aspect of being social?
This memory was brought back to life for me when I was assigned to read “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” written by Nicholas Carr, in my English class. Carr introduces an idea that technology is changing how our human intellect operates in a way where it is possibly “dumbing” us down. Carr explores the impact of technology on our intelligence, which really is an interesting concept and I would recommend the article to anyone. However, Carr’s article doesn’t really mention the social aspect side. Does social media have any kind of impact on how we interact with each other on a daily basis? So out of curiosity and a slight hint of resentment towards people who take out there phone and check Facebook or Twitter while trying to have an engaging conversation with them, we’ll get this ball rolling and find some...