Is Technology “Causing Social Isolation”?

In the article Stop Saying Technology Is Causing Social Isolation, Héctor L. Carral argues that technology might not be disconnecting us from real life interactions as much as people say it is. To be honest, when I am with my friends we spend the majority of our time on our phones. I agree with Carral though, I do not think that it is necessarily a bad thing.

The other day I was on the train coming home with my friend and we spent the entire time on our phones. This may seem like we were isolating ourselves from each other but we were actually going through our old messages reminiscing over memories from freshman year that we would have never remembered without these texts.

I think phones are keeping us more connected than ever and although some our real life interactions are jeopardized because of that overall we have become closer. We are able to constantly communicate with people we can’t see everyday and therefore can maintain friendships much more easily.

In these two pictures on above, I think that we may look disconnected because everyone is all on their phones but sometimes (as Carral says in his article) you “just [want] to relax [by] checking [your] Instagram feed or listening to some music”. When you get the chance to just relax while in the company of others I think it actually makes you feel less isolated.

Phones can also act as an escape during awkward social interactions. The text on the left is from my friend who was at a party where she didn’t know anyone. She (as I am sure many of us have) used her phone as a way to talk with someone who wasn’t with her because she had no one else to talk to. Phones have made it easy to look busy when you have nothing to do, and talk to people when no one else is there.

Personally, I think it would be a lot harder to be friends with people if we didn’t have technology. I use it all the time with my friends to look through old pictures or messages or to take new pictures to capture the moments that we are spending together. They make it easy to be in constant contact and to keep connections with people that you don’t get to see all the time for whatever reason. It is easy to judge people for being on their phones when they are with a group of people but you shouldn’t because you never know what is on their screen.

Internet and Society

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