It’s all happening–we’re turning into cyborgenic mashed potatoes.  Spectating instead of acting in this very real, theatrical presentation called human life seems to be the norm for many in the new age.  Take what happened at USC last night: TV’s Science Guy, Bill Nye, collapsed onstage, mid-sentence, as he walked toward a podium during a talk he was giving.  Instead of anybody running to his aid, the crowd simply picked up their PDAs and started tweeting…yes tweeting.  Doh!

One student gave the play by play with: “Bill Nye tripped on his computer cord while speaking at USC, was out for abt 5 secs, got back up, spoke w/ slurred speech and fainted.”

According to preliminary reports, Nye is doing fine physically; the cause of his fainting unknown.  But what interests me is the reliance…nay, addiction perhaps…to our technology.

In another recent incident, foul-mouthed comedian, Messy Mya, who is known for his YouTube video rants, was shot dead last Sunday (November 14th) in the streets of New Orleans.  Again, instead of anybody helping him, cell phones are being pushed up into his face for photos and video of the pooling of blood next to his head.

Sick?  Or just the modern-age?  I’ll let you decide.

I’m a big proponent of adopting technology to improve and simplify our lives.  In fact, I am certain that as we evolve, we will do so along with our immediate and convenient access to information.  Saying that, however, makes me wonder how many will actually veer too deeply toward indifference.  Will we see some people actually lose touch with their humanity and become as “objective” as their hand-held computing devices?  Sure is looking that way.

Hey, I realize that everything–be it a new invention or life event–comes with both sides of a similar coin.  But I just hope you heed the warning that it will be easy to forget your human side, your heart if you will, that separates you from the machinery which now inundates your life, if you are not careful.  We are not machines; we are not our technology.  We are living, breathing, feeling organisms–those other things are just tools.  Use them, but stay in touch with who and what you are.  I’m certain that we’ll see much more of this behavior in the near future.  It’s up to each individual to determine how much he or she wants to control their use of technology, or risk being run by it.

2 Responses to Tweeting is the New Reality

  1. clare says:

    I agree. I spent 2 days on a farm with no technology living involved and it’s the best experience enjoying and eating pure natural earth resources. A real inner peace. Technology is highly important now a days and yeah we really should know how to control the things around us. We always need time for ourselves and with nature.

  2. Nick, I think you’re right, we need a global digital detox. Pico Iyer in The Joy of Quiet (great article in the NY Times) talked about luxury resorts where you hand over your Blackberry and there’s no Wi-Fi – on purpose!

    In the corporate world, bosses’ easy access to employees via technology means it’s harder to really switch off during a holiday. One thing is tech being useful to us – another is being a human slave to it all. It’s as addictive as sugar now.

    I think once more proof leaks about about the hazards of mobile phones and radiation, there will eventually be a backlash. We’re not there yet, though. Every time there’s a new iPhone it’s big headline news…and now we’re Tweeting what we’re eating, who we’re with, what we feel, what we’ve seen and what we love and hate.

    I love Twitter – it’s the biggest cocktail party on the planet, it’s second to none for “being first” with breaking news, but you can see it happening already – the big day when technology will officially be recognised as source of severe stress and illness.

    Like everything else, the constant buzz of technology around is OK in moderation but potentially menacing to our health over the mid-long term. Plus, unless you’ve been researching the effects of mobile phones you’re not going to be aware of the risks – the US is already ahead of the UK/Europe on that front.

    Technology has changed our lives and keeps us connected as a worldwide family and that’s great, but the whole tech thing has become like one massive jungle of electronic devices that isn’t easy to switch off (and we need to do that much more often – as humans we weren’t designed to cradle mobile phones in our necks or sit at a laptop all day – even though I do it!)

    It’s such an interesting “debate”. But sometimes I’m amazed we can still hear the wind and see the stars for all the buzz around us…

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