It seems like each of my first two reflections posed some sort of overlying question, so I am going to keep with that theme in this week’s post.
As a twenty-something living in the digital age, I’d like to think that I am pretty well-versed in the world of social media. I use platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat on a daily basis and others like Venmo, Yelp, and Netflix on a weekly basis. Having said that, this week, specifically the in-class presentations, showed me that even I have a lot to learn in the art of social media. For example, did you know that there was a site for book recommendations that also acts as a social network?! Well thanks to one of my classmates, I now know that there is (it’s called Goodreads, by the way).
There truly is a form of social media for almost anything these days. From book recommendations to photo sharing to instant messaging to money transferring and beyond. Regardless of our personal interests, society can choose from hundreds, and probably thousands, of social media platforms to connect with people around the world. In the same way that we are reliant on always being connected, we are reliant on being social. But are we really being social? We constantly hear about people who would rather text than make phone calls, or those who would rather post Facebook statuses than catch up with their friends. All of these different platforms allow us to connect in ways that we’ve never been able to connect before, and with people all over the world. The reach is undoubtedly bigger with social networks, but is it really helping people connect better with friends and family that they interact with on a regular basis anyway? Or is it, in a way, just making us more socially awkward instead?