Is Technology Invading Your Privacy?
Technology is an enabler that makes our life convenient and comfortable. However, overuse/addiction of technology invades our privacy and personality development.
I remember in the 90’s we used to spend quality time with our family on weekends/vacations. We used to go for picnics, play board games such as Scrabble, Monopoly etc, or watch TV series like Ramayan/Mahabharat and Rangoli/Antakshari. Nowadays, our life revolves around Whatsapp or Facebook/Twitter etc.
The good thing about technology is that I have been able to connect with friends in different cities and abroad easily. Just drop a message on Whatsapp and there you go! I may not get an instant response (unlike a phone call), but I will know that my friend has read the message when I see two blue tick marks adjacent to my message.
Birthday Wishes: This is something that bothers me a lot. I always maintain a practice of calling my near and dear ones and wish them on their birthday. I believe the recipient feels happier. Nowadays, Facebook notifies your friend list and also has an automated birthday wish. Your friends will click on it and it’s done. But, somewhere I feel that the personal connect is missing in the entire process. You don’t even have few minutes to compose your exclusive birthday wish for your friend or aren’t you that creative or maybe you are obliged to wish.
Recently, I received the news of a close relative passing away from a Facebook post. I felt weird.
Living Alone: I live in a different city, but Whatsapp has helped me as I send updates to my parents regularly about my whereabouts. Even then, my mother feels relieved when I give her a call and she hears my voice; she feels convinced that I am safe and fine.
New ‘Family’: As I write, I remember an instance about a family of four — a couple and two kids. Each member has a smartphone and the mother created a Family group on Whatsapp. When dinner is served, the mother sends a message to the family members, and everyone comes for dinner. Next morning, tea is served and the members are notified. Now, each member is glued to his/her smartphone- father is reading the e-paper; mother is checking social media updates; son is playing an online action game; and the daughter is checking out the latest fashion trends on Amazon/Flipkart.
Is this an ideal family?
Visiting a friend: I visited my friend after a long time. An hour later, we realized that instead of talking to each other, one of us was either answering calls or checking Whatsapp messages/FB updates. Did we really value the fact that we were meeting after a long time?
Weekends: During the work week, you dare not switch off your mobile phone because you might get a call at odd hours. In case you miss the call, your appraisal will be at stake :) It’s another issue that your manager may not have developed task management/delegation skills; however, I am not going to elaborate further on that as it will divert the attention of the readers.
In the weekends, try to focus on ‘ME’ time. You call the shots. I volunteer for an organization and cut off myself from technology for few hours. Here’s a list of things you can do.
· Read a book
· Read the newspaper
· Write blogs
· Listen to music
· Reorganize your room
There are plenty of activities for you, but only if you wish to utilize your time productively. You will not lose anything if you do not access your mobile phone for few hours in the weekend.
Writing: When is the last time you held a pen in your hand and wrote something on a piece of paper? Typing on a laptop has spoiled your habit of writing.
Impairment of Human Memory: Remembering birthdays and other important life events don’t require a sharp memory anymore. The term ‘photographic memory’ i.e. you remember what you see/hear in the first instance itself; sadly it is on the decline. Reminders from Google Calendar and Facebook events will not allow forgetting anything anymore. What happens next? You brain is idle and the neurons become inactive. You can’t even remember simple details like people’s phone numbers or addresses.
Are we slowly paralyzing our mind? Do you remember your bank’s account number/ATM PIN/Login Password?
The point I am trying to emphasize through this post is that if you do not take care and prioritize your life goals, no sooner would you become a technology addict and then nobody would be able to help you recover from this kind of addiction.
Mobile apps and social media channels make your life convenient and comfortable. But please, let them not govern your life.