Facebook is the killer of all creativity and individuality.
How can you think for yourself when you are hit with a constant barrage of suggestions on how to think?
You like Michelle, and she likes Jill Stein, so maybe you like Jill Stein too. It sounds silly to articulate but how many of us are making decisions solely off of the opinions of others? I saw one two-minute clip of Jill Stein and was on board – no questions asked. I’m embarrassed to say I was swayed so quickly, and after looking deeper, we could have elected a TeleTubby with the same do-good attitude as well as the same intellect, but how many of us are basing important decisions (i.e. electing the President of the United States) solely off of the opinions of others on social media?
Do you see a movie because of the trailer, or because of the reviews from other people?
Have you ever said “Oh yeah I like that place,” solely because somewhere out there you saw an Instagram picture of people having fun at a place, and your wiring between reality and social media is so crossed that you somehow have an opinion on a place that you have never been?
There is too much shit out there for you to have a steadfast opinion on all of it. You haven’t read the Affordable Care Act so I don’t want to hear your opinion on the subject… But that won’t stop me from reading through your post and giving my equally uninformed view that I got from another person’s point of view. It is okay to tell someone you do not know the answer to a question. It is okay to shut the fuck up if you are not informed on an issue.
It’s not a new concept. Most people’s initial political affiliation is based off of their parents’ preferences. When you are ten years old and your uncle tells you the immigrants took his job, that’ll do a lot to shape your deep-seated views on immigration.
It’s not until you get away from your family that you realize immigrants didn’t take that call center job. It was outsourced to someone that has lesser opportunity and will accept lesser pay.
But what if you never left your parent’s house? What if your parents inundated you with meme’s that fortified your views for 4-6 hours a day?
Even if you are strong willed enough to form an entirely independent view of life in general. Even if you can block out the Tweets, the Instagram posts, the Facebook ads – you are still on social media too much.
The internet was meant to be a tool for efficiency and has turned into my biggest cause of idle time. Imagine if I spent half of the time spent on Facebook a day learning a new language? Do you know how long I have been telling myself that I was going to start this blog?
Social media was meant to be a tool to share unique views, but it is used to fortify existing opinions.
The days of hearing the “Facebook is the best way to keep in touch with my friends and family’” excuse are gone. People went from understanding the absurdity of Facebook to embracing it as part of their being.
People develop severe psychological dependencies, and alternate personalities because of social media.
Go take a fucking bike ride. Sit, away from your phone for a day. You will start to realize what this is doing to you.
People are becoming less interesting. Don’t tell me about a meme you read. Tell me about something you did. Reading a discussion from an online forum is not a story it’s a script from a shitty reality show.
The internet is so close to being ingrained into every facet of our lives. What decisions are you making, and what decisions are being made for you? Algorithms pick your mate on Tinder. Algorithms pick new artists for you to listen to. They decide what you will eat and which local businesses will prosper.
And apparently they dictate what you will write about too…
The first step in fixing a problem is admitting there is one. I don’t have a solution. It’s hard to quit cold turkey on any addiction, but I can’t be the only one noticing that there is in fact a problem.
Baby steps – Acknowledge it was weird that you checked your phone twice before you finished reading this. Understand that you aren’t going to change anything with a pretentious blog post, and stop linking your happiness to the perceived happiness of others.
Social media can be a tool for creativity, and can be used to showcase your uniqueness. It gives a platform for educated debate. It can spread groundbreaking ideas, and provide tangible change.
But is that what you are using it for?