social technology

tonight, as i sat in worship with my fellow seniors after receiving my assignment to region 3, i wondered how people years ago would hear about their draft picks and notify others, which i’m assuming is one at a time since it was not always possible to send out mass emails or texts.

because after i read my letter, i told the people sitting at my table and then texted my family and some of my closest friends (those i knew who really wanted to know). within seconds i got responses from people. i couldn’t keep up with the texts as they were responding to me. and then after i got back and reconnected with the internet, i posted it on facebook where i was getting responses from friends within minutes.

i was struck by how closely connected we are to technology in today’s world

reading shirky, i was struck by comments that highlight just how different our connection is between media/technology and society. “When we change the way we communicate, we change society.” (p. 17)

we live in a world of blogs, emails, chatting, facebook, twitter and countless other online sources of communication. i remember the days where emails and chatting (instant messenger or chat rooms) were the norm, but all of a sudden the communication (at least my experience of it) is far-reaching and instantaneous.

i may not tweet, but i understand the appeal of the short blurb. i update my facebook status a lot (less than i used to) because i think that people want to know what’s going on. and because people tend to be interested (as shown by their comments).

but i’m intrigued by how we navigate what to share and what to read. the assumption has changed from “if something is out where we can find it, it must have been written for us” (p. 89) in previous generations to the assumption of today’s generation that we simply filter what we want to read (often after we have read portions). i approach the internet with the assumption that i will read posts and thoughts that may have not been written for me but i will still find interesting. it’s similar to eavesdropping where you never know what you will encounter but you still can’t help but listen in. only in this case, you read someone’s thoughts, inside jokes or opinions with a full awareness that you are able to get an insider look into their world, whether or not they thought of you when they typed the words


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