Home Alone could never be remade in the year 2011.
Simply because social media would have instantly saved Macaulay Culkin from The Wet Bandits at the start of the film. Now, a kid of his age and intellect could easily reach for his computer or his iPad to call for help. Help would then come running, and whoops! There goes the plot.
Today, we are lucky enough to live in a digital society. Our digital society allows one to express his thoughts to the public in 140 words or less and have face-to-face conversations with an individual who is located half way across the world. The internet provides us with the ability to have social interactions without ever being in a social setting. It lets us communicate through machines powered by a battery life. There are, however, some downsides to the technological take over that is occurring across the universe. These battery powered machines power us to forget about physical interactions and face-to-face relationships.
We can sit at home and interact with thousands of people. We can chat with them while watching the same television program without being in the same state. We can take pictures with people who are across the coast. We love the fact that social media makes our social lives convenient. It even helps us stay up to date with people that we may have otherwise forgotten. Without Facebook, you may have never known that your ex-girlfriend got married or learned that your best friend from elementary school had a baby girl. Isn’t social media great?
The problem that lays below the greatness that is social media is a simple one: when we turn the power button off our digitally networked lives don’t turn off with it. When we are not home, we still carry our social mediums in the palm of our hands in the form of smart phones, tablets, mp3 players, and gaming systems. We “check-in” at nightlife venues to let our friends inside our world. We tweet about the annoying lady standing on line in front of us at Starbucks and upload videos of the crazy protesters we walked by in the street this afternoon. We can also buy automatic likes. Sure, social media allows us to see the lives of our peers and coworkers more then ever before in a social way, but it does so while detaching us from our social lives.
Before you jump to conclusions, I will admit that I am a social media junkie. I play “Words with Friends” with acquaintances that I don’t truly consider my friends. Don’t lie, you do, too! I even check up on my Klout score every morning to see how influential I am to the online community. Like you, I feel a smile come on when I get a new follower on Twitter or Tumblr. I get it, and I also get that social media has taken over my perception of reality as well as that of the predominant population of the world. It is an outlet that allows us to creatively escape from the mundane occurrences of everyday life. It allows us to present ourselves however we want to be perceived and communicate in ways our forefathers would have never envisioned.
I can’t get enough of it, but I cant help but wonder: Is digital networking helping us manage our social lives better or really just disconnecting us from the physical social world?