Here Comes Everybody

 

I tried a little experiment out for myself a few months ago. Anytime I was with a group of people I would pull out my phone and do something on it. Write a text, check a Snapchat, it didn’t matter I would just pull it out. Surely enough, within just a few seconds almost everyone else in the group would do the same thing. I did this a few times with the same results every time. Why is this? Why do we feel the need to be on our phones all the time? Not just on our phones, but it is what we do with them. We go on Facebook, Twitter, and all these other social networking sites while in the company of others. I thought the point of social networking was to socialize while away from people, so why are we socializing on our phones while socializing amongst other people? Double socializing? Sounds like a bit much to me.

But it has become the norm. I have a Facebook because, well everyone has a Facebook and I feel like I keep it because otherwise I would be missing out on a lot of important things my friends have going on. That is, until I see my Facebook feed and find nothing but memes and Vine videos flooding it.  I haven’t dived into many other social networking sites, but it doesn’t appear that I need to. It seems as though all social networks have combined into one big one because I don’t just see Facebook updates on my newsfeed. I see who posted what on Instagram and people hashtagging through Twitter. It seems as though everything is in the same space now, which I guess is good because it saved time logging into all those sites and looking at them all.

As mentioned before we are going through a shift where children as young as elementary school have phones that are smarter than a super computer from the 1980s. Regardless of what you may want to happen, students are going to be social networking in class since they have the means to. If you can’t beat them, then join them. Social networking can be distracting and has a lot of other cons to it, but it does have some pros. You can use social networking in a classroom to engage students in topics and share online material with students that they can watch on their free time. Also, I found a really cool site called edmodo.com that is like a Facebook you can use for a classroom. Students will have fun with it and teachers can use it for all types of stuff such as allowing students to turn in work, posting quizzes, and sharing information. Oh and of course, socializing.

I was watching Hot Tub Time Machine a while ago which is the story of a group of men who time travel back to 1986 with the use of a hot tub. One part of the movie really stuck out to me. Jacob, a teenager who is really involved in technology asked a girl for her cell phone number, but she doesn’t have one. He asks her for her Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter information but she doesn’t know what that is since it doesn’t exist yet. He finally asks her “How will I get into contact with you then?” and she replies “Find me”. He then says “That sounds exhausting.”  This made me think of how crazy it is that in just a few decades we have made it so easy to get into contact with each other that you can do it almost any time you like. New technology is only making it easier with the use of social networking that you can basically track someone down by just reading their Twitter feed. It has made quite an impact on our culture, but it also keeps our noses down since our eyes are always on our phones. I’m just afraid that the only way we will be able to socialize in the future is through the use of social media.

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2 thoughts on “Here Comes Everybody”

  1. I agree with you that we all feel the need to be on our phones. I accompanied my older aunts to one of her doctor visits and as we sat there everyone was on either their phone or tablet. I had my phone in my hand and I was aimlessly going through Facebook or twitter. My aunt then said “I remember the time when sitting in the waiting room, could mean making a new friend.” I thought that was really interesting too, that people used to talk to each other and not feel so distant. A small conversation would start up about the weather or something but people talked to each other rather than seemly going through someone else’s news feed. I do agree however that in educational settings these forms of media have made things more connect. Edomodo is such a school site whether parents, students, teacher and faculty can all gather. I love that now if you have a question or a parent has a concerned it does not have to be solved the next morning at school but a parent or student can just message a teacher. I hope this gradual change doesn’t diminish the classic teacher-student relationship, where a student saw a teacher as someone to look up to and to respect and not just another “friend” on a site.

  2. How funny, as I finished reading your first paragraph in regards to your experiment I came to realize how true it is, if I am working in a small group and someone takes the initiative to pull out their phone I feel the need to do the same! I can definitely relate to that and I am sure many other individuals do as well. I definitely agree that most social media has been integrated to one big one, for instance, facebook, we are now able to see post people make with their various accounts through just facebook. I agree that it is less of a hassle to just check one since you can view most of what others are posting through other sites rather than logging into your different accounts. Watching all these videos about how much social media and technology has become crucial in our daily lives just keeps amazing me. Most of my students, children ages 3 to 4, integrate technology even into their play! They find ways to pretend they are using an ipad or an iphone. Just makes me question how far will technology continue to enhance and will it benefit our future or not.

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