Reliance on web isolates people


People are increasingly becoming more reliant upon social networking sites to stay connected to each other, so it makes sense that HTC mobile is planning to release two phones that include a Facebook button. Consider what that means — Facebook has become such an integral part of life that people need to access it immediately via a button on their phones. The Facebook button is a potent symbol, then, which signifies contemporary society's over-reliance on the Internet in facilitating all interactions.

At the risk of sounding nostalgic, it used to be that children came home from school and ran out into the neighborhood to knock on doors and scrounge up enough playmates for a round of tag. Now, kids run straight to the computer and log into Farmville. When people feel lonely, they don't push themselves to seek help — they merely start pouring their emotions out to strangers on blogs and nothing gets solved. Sure, social networking sites serve some really important purposes, but there is no substitute for good old-fashioned interfacing with flesh and blood human beings.

Consider, for example, the Egyptian revolution — this was a movement roughly 30 years in the making, and it happened because people came together as one. But a lot of people are crediting Facebook and Twitter with starting the revolution. These sites definitely helped facilitate the revolution, there's no doubt about that. But to claim they did anything more than facilitate is absurd. That was a revolution caused by people — not the Internet. Give credit where credit is due.

Facebook is becoming more and more important, and the Internet is surpassing real life. There are many benefits to staying connected through the Internet, but talking through a monitor will never be the same as talking face-to-face. Let's not forget that.


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