I have been thinking a lot lately about how in the new cyber world we live in, we have lost touch with our inner monologues. In the days of our grandparents, I really don’t think that a really phenomenally bad smelling “fart” would be a story that would be worthy of long distance bills or postage to alert family and friends. Unfortunately with Twitter and Facebook, we think it, we see it, we do it, we want it and we post it to let the entire world know.
When did it become socially acceptable to bear all our unedited inner thoughts to civilization? Funny moments, sad moments, annoying neighbors, internal moments, its all out there for all to read. I myself am an avid player at this, my kids say something funny, I post it. I have a random thought, I post it. Sometimes I see something that humours me in a store and I think to myself this is facebook worthy. The only thing I draw the line at is lashing out.
Many people in our cyber world have also deemed it socially acceptable to ridicule, slam or taunt others in their Facebook statuses or tweets. Many of us think that it’s okay to say whatever we want through our fingers, with no comprehension of how others might feel or perceive these actions. We have long forgotten what Thumper’s mother taught us all “If you don’t have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all". If it isn’t appropriate to say in person, do not type it, and definitely don’t make it your status.
I recently tried to explain this phenomenon to an older member of our society. This person had unintentionally offended someone else with an email. I myself having read the email was shocked at the demanding tone and felt it incredibly out of line and very rude. The author on the other hand thought they were just asking a simple question out of concern. I spent a bit of time trying to explain that when you read text you do not hear a tone of voice, therefore it is easy for messages to be read in the complete opposite way that it was intended.
Now, do not get me wrong, I am not saying I do not enjoy the cyber world we live in. In fact I LOVE it! It really is an amazing world we live in. I love that I am able to keep very close contact with friends and family. I even admit, our move has not been overly challenging to me because I do not even feel far away or disconnected from my loved ones because I know what is going on in their every day lives and what they are often thinking.
The point I wish to make is that, I wish that our fingers, had the sought after, once common inner monologue… Past generations may have called it common courtesy or self control. I will admit, I work constantly on getting a inner monologue for my fingers, hence the delete key is my best friend!
That being said, clearly all of my Facebook friends would know that clearly I am a work in progress!