Tag Archives: technology

The “Places” Facebook Feature

Personal privacy is something that’s becoming more and more scarce on the internet. Social networking sites encourage complete disclosure from participants, who blindly and willingly put their entire lives on display for their friends list.

Facebook, obviously one of the most popular social networking sites, has become an addiction for many; a day without a status update is not a day worth living for. Entire photo shoots are dedicated to a new profile picture, and god forbid a Wall go without maintenance.

The youth of today, Generation Y, or the Echo Boomers, are associated with an innate ability to manipulate technology. Our parents ask for help with their cell phones, we’re supposed to be able to fix the unstable internet connection, and I guess we were just born knowing HTML, right? Yeah we’re good at it, but we need to get off of it sometimes.

Technology is change, and change is progress, and progress is good. But things are being taken too far, if you ask me. Facebook is turning into Stalkbook. Not only are my friends posting their most insignificant, mundane activities, but they are telling everyone exactly where they are with the new Places feature. My question is: who cares? If you’re at Safeway, awesome. But do I need to know that? No. No one needs to know that. Why is there the need to tell everyone your exact movements on a day-to-day basis? Is it approval we’re after?

It’s a complete paradox: there’s a constant panic concerning identity theft and information security, but at the same time, people will literally post everything and anything onto their profiles. It doesn’t make sense.

Technology is an invaluable tool, but it will take over if we hand ourselves over to it.

This post is under Books, because I think it’s scary and disappointing how people insist upon putting their entire lives on the internet for people to “like.”

“Once upon a time there were books.”

Today I saw a commercial for an electronic reader toy, kind of like a Kindle for kids. As the child moved his or her finger across the screen over each word, it read out the words, telling a story. At least, this is what I gathered from the commercial. The opening line of this ad was, “Once upon a time, there were books.”

I was only half-heartedly watching some reality show on Bravo, but when I heard these words, I was startled and looked up to the screen; I then expected some kind of … satirization I suppose? But no, this was for real. Is this the way kids are learning to read now? I remember when I first started reading chapter books all by myself and part of the fun was being able to hold the book in my hands and turn the pages, actually knowing what the words meant. I remember feeling empowered; I remember thinking, “I can read anything in the world that I want to.” And years later, I still have some of my very favorite stories from those years. I can hold the books in my hands and remember how it felt when I first picked it up. I see these childhood books, and the books that I enjoy now, as almost sentimental objects. The authenticity of a solid, hold-in-your-hands book cannot be replaced by electronic toys. I feel the same way about this tech-savy toy as I do about the Amazon Kindle. I don’t care what anyone says, it’s just not the same. It’s not.

“Once upon a time, there were books.” The mere suggestion of the disappearance of actual books in favor of technology just gave me the chills;  the spokeswoman’s robotic, flight-attendant-like voice just transported me to a Big Brother society of hyper-censorship and complete mechanization. Bound novels are just one of the doorstops holding open the heavy, looming door of Orson Welles’ prediction.

This post is under Books, because I think the world would not be the same without books, and neither would the people in it.