Have you ever wondered exactly what all of these mobile devices are doing to us? As an agent, I’m almost always connected (it’s a part of client service!), but what’s the impact on our kids, families, and the role of true face-to-face time? (Ever gone out to dinner and watched a family spend the whole meal with their faces lit up by screens?)
If you’re at all concerned by these issues, you have to listen to this amazing interview on Fresh Air with Sherry Turkle, author of the new book “Alone Together
Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other.” Not only does she have fascinating insights into how texting and social media are shaping how we interact, but she also provides some interesting strategies for ensuring we maintain the crucial (human!) components of communication.
Some of the highlights from the interview cover:
– Young children using digital devices
– The effect of Facebook on teen identity
– Why we text
– Why cyberbullying can feel easier than face-to-face bullying
One discussion I enjoyed in particular was how Turkle recommends a ritual for setting devices aside during family dinners. Essentially, this involves shutting the devices down and storing them in a basket away from the dinner table for the duration of the meal. When the complaints begin, Turkle advises explaining (not an exact quote): “Dinner is a time when the family can come together and be present with each other.”
Whether or not you check out the book, the interview itself is well worth the half hour or so it takes to listen to it. Take it with you to the gym on your iPod, or plug it in on your next commute. It might just help you better understand the mindset of the “mobile generation” and foster better communication all around.
Here’s the link to the interview: