I’m Taking The Goldfish
Alicia Malone

Alicia you’re a really talented writer first of all, I mean wow that thing had me hooked from the beginning It might have a little bit to do with the fact that I just recently watched Jerry Maguire for the first time, but lets put that aside and focus on the meat of your article, because its very very good. (This response may actually be as long as your article itself, I love writing it help clear my mind)

Is social media taking over? Hell yes. I recognize it as much as you do. Everyday at my school I see less and less people interacting with each other, and rather with their phones texting of Facebook messaging or tweeting to each other. Hell, even I interact with some people on social media more than I interact with them in real life. The first thing I do when I get up in the morning is check Facebook and Twitter. The first thing my fingers have been programmed in my mind to do, by muscle memory, is to type the letters “F” and “A” and my browser will fill in the rest. I sometimes even catch myself closing the Facebook tab, only to absent mindedly open up another one two seconds later. Its then I that I realize, “What that hell has the world come to?”

Some people would say that that’s just how the world is. “We’re in the age of technology” they say, “it’s time to get with the times”. I humbly disagree with them. If we continue to let social media limit our human interactions with each other then we’ll forget how to interact with each other in real life. I’ve had it happen to me with a girl that I was far too nervous to talk to in person so I talked to her through texts and Facebook, but when it came down to it I couldn’t talk to her in real life. Could that be a personal fault? Maybe. But I like to think it happens more than you think.

Social media, especially Twitter and Facebook has a major tendency to blow things out of proportion or misunderstand an issue. Many minor issues, things that people tolerated as a normal part of life, are now being exposed to the online world as “potential apocalypse causing issues!!”. Okay, I’m exaggerating a little and I don’t want to get into a political debate, but I’m sure you’ve seen it. People misquoting celebrities or authority figures, either purposely or by accident, and twisting their words to make something seem a lot worse than it is. Then it’s spread across the internet, catching on like wildfire until thousands and thousands of people are up in arms over something that they have completely wrong. The biggest culprit of this? Clickbait articles. God, I hate those damn things.

So yes, social media and by extension the technology that we so heavily rely on are limiting how we talk to people and twist our view of the world according to people’s agendas or simply just by accident. We put on a face on social media, or rather, people judge us as a person based upon our social media persona and this is simply ruining the way we interact as human beings. As a business student, the first thing we’re taught when meeting a potential employer or client is to check their Linkedin. That’s a perfect example of how we simply judge a person by the merits and skills listed on a website, rather than their actual skills and talents. It’s nearly become and epidemic.

Now at this point you must be thinking that I’m a major pessimist. Or maybe a realist. Either way, I’m not here to tell you why social media is the most horrible thing since the Alvin and the Chipmunks movie franchise, because that would be blowing things out of proportion, on social media ironically. No, it’s not the worst thing. In fact it has many redeeming qualities to help counteract the negatives that it can bring.

You stated in your article that you mainly use social media now to help connect to us, the fans or your tribe (btw I love that name). Because of social media I would’ve never become such a film nerd or even gotten my job as a film critic working for an online magazine. The only reason I got that opportunity is because I was introduced to the online film world and by extension the film social media sphere. I can tell you right now that if you left social media, I personally would be very upset because you’re one of my biggest idols in the industry that I hope to work for someday, but as you’ve seen from the reasons I listed prior, I do understand why you would want to leave.

Social media also helps outside of the film sphere, from humanitarian efforts to pure entertainment and education, social media and technology does have its upsides. Does that mean the negatives are now cancelled out? Nope. Do the negatives mean that we should deactivate all our accounts and leave the internet for ever? Nope. But it does help put things into perspective that social media, in doses is a very beneficial thing.

So now what? Can I make this decision for you? No, obviously not, only you can. I just wanted to help using my own experience paint a broader picture to help guide your decision. Whatever your decision, I understand.

I’d really like to be able to talk to you about this some more because this is something that’s been slowly bothering me more and more over the past few years, so feel free to message me on Facebook (how ironic, eh?).