There's this article I came across sometime last week, but it was originally published four months ago. The article was by Gary Vaynerchuk, better known as Garyvee, on his website. It was titled, 'This Generation Will be Fine: Why Social Media Won't Ruin Us'. I was obviously super intrigued and knew I was in for another biased opinion of this Internet personality. And I was right! This article was all kinds of biased crap in so many ways.

In his article, Vaynerchuk insists that whatever is happening with technology in our culture right now, is evolution. 

What’s happening with technology in our culture and society is just evolution. Technology is not undermining real human interactions. Instead, it is exposing people for who they really are.

First off, how isn't technology undermining real human interactions? Everywhere you look, everyone's heads are down, staring at their mobile phone screens, scrolling through aimlessly for hours. I am so guilty of this kind of behaviour. I'm sure we all are. How often do we put our phones down, and turn around to talk to the person sitting right next to us? I'm not talking about strangers, now. I'm talking about the people we know, and live with.

We should not “feel sorry” for the couple on a date who are looking at their phones. For all we know, their phones are providing a different, more constructive outlet to focus their attention instead of allowing for arguments or an awkward silences. Two people who didn’t like each other would ignore each other regardless of Instagram or Angry Birds.

This absolutely made no sense to me. And I won't even begin to debate that. I'll just point out that it's not about two people ignoring each other because they don't like each other. It's about two people who do like each other, don't talk to each other because they are so busy being present in the virtual world. Sure, social media has saved many of us from making small talk, and helped us escape those awkward silences, but I don't find the need to glorify social media. But don't get me wrong, I have nothing against it, I manage social media accounts for a living. The only problem I have is how all of us have become so engrossed in our virtual lives, and distant from the real world. Mostly how people idiotically believe that they're making a difference by participating in the usage of hashtags for every disaster that strikes, and only taking half a second to switch back to their own lives. We don't give a second thought to how we can really help, and make a real difference to those suffering.

In the 1940s, people had their heads in the newspaper and their ears to the radio. By the 60s, it was the TV. What about everyone today on their laptop and smartphones at a Starbucks? See what I’m getting at?

I personally think this is such an unfair comparison. I was born in the early 90s, and grew up in a city. This didn't stop me from going outdoors to climb trees, and run around playing cop and robbers with my friends. I've had the best days in my childhood, all from staying outdoors when my parents were at work all day. So, how does Vaynerchuk compare this age of technology to newspapers and TV? People might have had their heads buried in newspapers, and eyes glued to the TV, but they knew when to put that paper down, and when to turn that TV off. Families spent time with each other watching TV together. With phones today, it's so much easier for the same families to walk away to their respective rooms, eager to visit the virtual world to hold virtual conversations. I mean, sure these days you can connect with people easier and make new friends, but I personally prefer heading outdoors and meeting new people. I know for a fact I'm not wrong about this because you can talk to anyone who grew up in that time period and they'll tell you how much time they spent outdoors, interacting and connecting with their friends, family, and nature. In this day and age of technology, we are more disconnected that anything else. It's an evolution of fragmented relationships.

Shout if I'm wrong.


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Published by Salokya Nag