I know most of us ‘millenials’ are sick to the core by the constant criticism about our ‘insular’ and ‘antisocial/non-active’ ways. The lot that usually does this, accuse the advancement of technology which has “caused” us to shut ourselves in and live in a make believe world of our own, where we create profiles of ourselves, the way we would like others to perceive us.
Many think that by doing this we are living a lie, and selling a lie of how we are in reality.However, this cannot be taken as 100% true. I don’t believe I can tell how a person is inside-out in real life rather than online. Even void of online communities like facebook and google plus or whatever, a person can still project a different image of him or herself in the real world. So that can’t be a problem then.
The problem is that we feel safer when we interact with others online, all shut up in our bedrooms, maybe with our laptops on the bed, unbathed and un-civilised. We set our alter-egos free in the virtual world, because we feel freer there. If we are allowing our ugly – inner sides to run rampant, while we bitch about the world to people we may or may not know, or click on blogs where people seem to be just as ugly as us- aren’t we being more sincere about who we are there? Aren’t we being more ‘honest’?
Online communities are therefore an extension of our reality. Although we are in a locked-seated position infront of a solid screen, we don’t feel this constrictive quality, because we allow our minds to fluidly spill into a world much larger than we ever had believed it to be.
So why this need and high prevalence of depending/resorting to online interaction?
There is hardly anyone out there who will be all ready to strike up a conversation with a stranger on the street.We choose to place ourselves in our rooms infront of our screens so routinely, because we feel scared of the outside world. I feel overwhelmed when I step out, and see so many people walking on their own paths (especially those who look so goddamn confident with what they’re doing in life), so many cars, potential scandals, danger etc. We see so much pain which we wish to never face. We are made to compete with people we wish we never knew.
If the world out there was nicer and safer, my online life would not be so primarily valued as it is right now. I think living in a space where we have more control over who we want to talk to, or what we want to read is the only real choice we opt for. With or without external influences, we feel less manipulated as we feel more empowered with information at our finger tips.