If I told you that people should be talking more, away from their technology and media, would you agree? Would it be remiss of me to cast aside face-to-face interaction as if it were the shredded paper of something intrinsic to social customs? Those customs, that perhaps, in fact probably, led to the breakdown of language barriers and intolerance a long time ago. A few it seems, actually a lot, would say “Yes.”
It’s increasingly apparent that we look down on the tools of the millennial trade as though they are inhibitors of the conversation. A conversation that was once had, but no longer exists – apparently. We’ve heard it all.
“How would this generation survive without Wi-Fi?”
“How did WE survive without Facebook?”
And then of course come the solutions. The answers to premediated questions that leave no room for enlightenment. Lordly answers that tell us, and our millennials, that that way was the better way, and that this way is contemptable. Well, I disagree. Millennial conversation is just as important. Conventional conversation does not need to be erased, it just needs to coexist.
Any angled-shape has sharp edges, points to be avoided. That doesn’t mean they’re not useful. That doesn’t mean they don’t want to be part of the conversation. We have thousands of modes of communication and maybe that’s something to behold. It’s something we should be thankful for. Everyday, billions of messages are being sent across the world. An Australian can agree (or disagree) with a Norwegian living in Italy. We can be inspired by the outputs of creativity, or challenge the unlawful injustices that were never brought to light. We can laugh. We can relate. We can love a post. We can deconstruct antiquated thoughts, the ones that previously mocked choices.
Have you ever searched fan-fiction on Reddit? Do it. Although the discussion might not relate to ‘considered reality’, although it may not bear any interest to you, it’s completely human. These are people with their passions. They have their favourite characters, their likes, and their fears. Have you watched a YouTube video of an aspiring musician? Have you read a blog on the pros and cons of vaccination? You might disagree, you might be enraged, but you are engaging. You are a part of the conversation and that, I think, is one of the most undervalued traits of humanity. The more we look down technology, our Google, our Facebook, the more we veil a new-age unity. Let’s take a minute to acknowledge the conversation and stop putting humanity down as though it’s constantly facing devastation. Problems have existed in the past, just as they exist now, and just as they will exist in the future.
We may sit on the bus alone, with headphones in our ears and looking down at our phones, but at least we’ve found another way to join the chatter. Social media has given us all voices – where in the past it was a luxury for those who spoke the loudest. Each time you post a comment (provided it’s not meant to cause hurt), each time you throw a like, each time you share something meaningful, or perhaps just plain pretty, you’re causing a beat in a global heart.
We are living in a more ‘social’ world than ever before; we are talking to each other.
Written by Michael Rogaris – 24th January 2017
Photo: Santorini 2012, however irrelevant to the post.