I did some toggling and playing with the bells and whistles on this site. I removed the social media share buttons ’cause I’m trying not to contribute to a system that rewards unhealthy behavior. Also, when I want to share a link on social media, I just copy/paste the link. I’m sure lotsa other people still do that too. I did leave the “email” and “print” buttons ’cause although they’re automated sharing mechanisms, they don’t advertise any particular companies. I’m also trying to be more conscious and wary of too much automation in my life.
I don’t memorize phone numbers anymore and I haven’t written down directions to a place in over a decade. I’m still pretty good at looking at a map before I leave for my destination so I can know the area that I’m going to and how to get back, but I know I’m becoming too dependent on these kinds of technology. I’m also trying to be more thoughtful of how my data such as location and destination history are used by bad people for bad things and adjust.
I’m not a luddite -even copy/paste and print/email themselves are automated tech things. I’m writing this on a device that fits in my pocket to publish on a gigantic network of extremely powerful computers. I’m not a luddite, I just don’t want my basic people skills to deteriorate more than they already have. Which is also part of the purpose of this blog.
I swore off use of the “like” button a while back.. I decided to try and use my words more if I have something to add to a conversation.
And that lasted about a week. I don’t entirely blame myself. There are all kinds of manipulative incentives to click on a myriad of buttons on and off Facebook, and they work. And between gifs and emojis and memes and likes, there are all kinds of communication or signaling tools that I think in the long run are unhealthy. I know, too much of anything is bad, but the overnight ability to instantly publish, share, or consume nearly any kind of media instantly, has consequences. Some of those consequences are good, really good, but it definitely changes people and I’m not sure I’m thinking about that enough. I’m not against social media, but a newsfeed on there should just be a chronological feed of all of your friend’s updates, with an unfollow option, and without manipulation.
It sounds trivial to complain about but I think could be a little more outspoken with each other about how everyone seems to be shouting in order to be heard, and that’s a dynamic that’s been deliberately encouraged by the bad guys who own these companies. It’s a direct result of that manipulation of the feeds on social media. It’s all fun and games until you wake up one day and Donald Trump is President of the United States.
I need to edit and rewrite more.
Anyway, this isn’t an essay, it’s a free writing journal entry, and it’s my site, so I get to write whatever I want. I’m just getting back into the swing of writing every day, and these things will get better! so there!