Jim Reeves’ The Blocking I and II made me think, an activity I normally reserve for cooking with fire and Mario Kart.
I’m not an extrovert by any means, but I’m also not one to shy from a conversation. I also can tell when I’m being sold or when someone isn’t listening. A conversation, by definition, must be two-way. If/when it is, I rather enjoy getting to know someone.
Social media, as a communication tool, empowers us to filter input down to only what we deem acceptable. If I choose, I can limit followers, contacts, etc. to those who think/do/write exactly how I want. Don’t like what I just posted? Beep — you’re banned. Support that policy? Well I don’t — beep. You prefer curly, fluffy dogs to the much more likable smooth kind? Double-beep!
I believe it’s detrimental to over-filter as much as it is to over-share. Reality is full of discord; the trick is how we deal with it. As with other skills, logical reasoning, debating and listening should be exercised. It’s not about winning the argument; it’s mostly about agreeing that two or more opinions can exist in the same space without anger. I believe shutting out all possibility of disagreement creates what they call an echo chamber. What a depressing and eerie image that term connotes.
So I ask myself if my use of Medium’s blocking feature makes me a hypocrite. Maybe, but I bear in mind I choose not to interact with those who have lost, or never had, the ability to interact. Again, I know when I’m being sold or when someone isn’t listening.
To that end, I’ll label what I do as climate control versus the virtual mind control which, in my humble opinion, is eroding constructive communication with younger generations.
Disagree? Then tell me why. I welcome it.