Gabrielle McGarry

February 15, 2017

How do I Talk to you in Person?


Speaking to someone over a social media platform rather than in person is something we have all done at some point in our lives.  Many of us, though, have hidden behind the internet to call out others, complain about politics, or subtweet our roommates for being too messy.  We find confidence in our fingers and our devices, but not when it comes to face-to-face meetings.  It’s getting harder and harder for us to put down our devices and have true, human interactions with those around us.

But why is this?  If we open our communication to people all around the world and vomit every thought that drifts through our mind, how can we not interact with those around us in the physical world?  We all know social media is addicting and our phones are virtually impossible to let go of, but when did it become so difficult to share small talk with the woman sitting next to you on the bus or the man in front of you in line?  It’s so easy for me to call out someone on a public social media platform, but if I was forced to do this in real life, I would cower back and think twice before saying anything.  This is because social media is a metaphor for real life.  As technology has advanced, we, as human beings, have adapted to this new way of life.  Humans are now dependent on social media and find it almost impossible to avoid.

With social media, we are able to stalk friends, friends of friends, cousins of our friends’ friends and so on and so forth.  We are already aware that they took a trip to Cancun in 2012 and that their sister was married to John in 2014.  It has lead to the death of civilized conversation because we already know everything there is to know about a person we don’t even personally know.  What’s the point in conversation if everything you’re saying, I already know?  We use social media to show our best face to others and so when we finally meet our followers in real life, it’s usually painfully awkward.  What do I say?  What do I ask?  I already know everything about them and now I have no idea where to begin!

Social media has many perks, but it could also be destroying human interactions.  We have to stop stalking and start talking again.