Smart phones, dumb people

Have you ever noticed that people rarely look at each other in the eye anymore and have an authentic conversation? A conversation free from the constant distraction and interruption from a myriad electronic devices that we all now possess?

I have. It seems the smarter and faster the phones and devices get, the slower, less responsive, and less human people become.

I almost feel embarrassed to write on this subject, as it’s something that’s constantly discussed. We all have been part of at least one conversation regarding texting, chatting, Facebook, etc…and have most likely agreed that people have become too dependent on technology, yet we still continue to practice the same behavior that we claim to despise in others.

Call it a purging of emotions, a rant, or perhaps even my 10 seconds atop the soapbox, but I must add my two cents. I honestly feel that we are slowly losing our humanity and our ability to connect with fellow human beings as technology and gadgets progressively strip us of our social skills and reduce us to an inferior species of human beings.  This is a serious matter. To me, it is something real and palpable, and I see examples on a daily basis. All it takes is a few minutes of scanning a Facebook page or text conversation of a typical tween to 20-something to realize this. It’s not only the young kids either; certain older people also fall into this trap. Perhaps the English teacher in me is surfacing a bit, but it is maddening and disheartening to watch an entire generation deteriorate to the point where incoherent babble is viewed as acceptable.

Am I being too harsh? I don’t think so. Perhaps what these people need is to have someone point out the absurdity of their words and actions so they can realize how they look/sound to an outside party. I have received text messages from people (who shall remain nameless!) that go something like this: “Howw aarrre youu doinggg?”…and “Wat aa niceee dayy it izz!!!”

I don’t even know where to begin.

Are you trying to buy a vowel? Did someone not teach you the general rules of spelling and sentence structure??  Perhaps your keyboard buttons just stick, right?…

But this is a growing trend. Whether it’s an inane attempt to appeal cool to your friends or seem trendy in some bizarre, uneducated kind of way, it is more widespread than ever today. It’s a funny phenomenon though. The same people who communicate in such a primitive way and appear to lack an understanding for the grammatical rules we’ve all agreed upon can hold a normal, coherent conversation in person. The blatant disregard for language appears not to spill over into live conversations. Yet.

“You’re being way too harsh and judgmental!”, I hear you cry. Am I though? I was once young, and I don’t recall people talking in such truncated, bizarre ways. Mostly we just used the language we’ve all been taught. It worked just fine. Then again, if we had something to say to someone, we told them in person or called them on the phone. Those were pretty much our two options. Is technology at least partly to blame for the deterioration of the younger generations’ social skills? I think so.

I guess time will tell.

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