Is humanity enslaved by technology? Access to the Internet has become the most essential and vital tool in today’s social society. The phenomenon of social networking sites has taken the world by storm.
Many say the Internet and social networking have depersonalized human interactions and relationships.
Author Chuck Klosterman wrote, “We are latently enslaved by our own ingenuity and we have unknowingly constructed a simulated world. As a species, we have never been less human than we are right now.”
The Internet also leaves the virtual door open for security risks. Criminals with access to your personal information can download malicious software to your computer. Or you can be targeted by scams that use links on various sites that download malware.
So is social networking creating more harm than good? I say no.
A decade ago, when a loved one moved far away, it meant losing touch with them. These days, sites like Facebook are keeping family and friends updated with each other’s lives on a daily basis no matter the miles between them.
In addition to the astonishing ability to bring people closer together, these types of sites also have been used in promoting positive social change. Social activists across the world use sites like Wiserearth as an influential device to spread word about their causes, enlist volunteers, and raise funds.
These sites also are used by various companies as a low-cost marketing tool which has opened up new promotional opportunities for the business community at large.
Social networking websites are an effective way of sharing information and strengthening a brand image. Social networking has now taken the place of pornography as the number-one activity on the web. Facebook has more than 665 million daily users, according to their earning’s call for the first quarter of 2013.
It’s true that the use of these sites also has created various problems. It’s easier to become captured by the momentum of more and more virtual experiences.
Philosopher Socrates said, “The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.”
However, the use of social networking sites has increased our overall quality of life. Overuse of this type of technology can reduce the opportunity for in-person communication and could potentially lead to loss of communication skills — if the user chooses.
The tool itself is neutral. It’s more about the choices made in how we use it. We can either use these tools for higher purposes or abuse them.