Throw out your technology ideology

Throw out your technology ideology

April 10
15:29 2013

Today’s college kid obtains information and enjoys entertainment in ways that a 90’s college kid could hardly imagine.

Blockbuster is now Redbox. TV is now Netflix and TV News is now Smartphone News. Even high school reunions are now practically irrelevant because of social networking websites.

With Internet access on phones and computers, we access things whenever we want, nearly wherever we want.

Just hop on the UNT bus and you’ll find almost every student on a digital device playing a game, talking, texting or listening to music.

Along with the rest of my generation, I have a high level of control over my choices of entertainment and technology, and I think this has changed how I value real life relationships.

Within a few minutes of meeting new people, judgments are made and my attention switches on or off. That’s why I think there are so many loners in college: We are so comfortable with our selfish control of entertainment that we overlook the first meeting of what could be a potential friend.

We are so used to researching whether something is worth our attention – for example, reading a review before renting a film – that we’ve replaced any uncertainty in our lives with safety.

Hollywood knows this, and I’ve noticed a recent trend of movies increasingly taking place in the near past. These types of films are close enough to our time to be modern, but far enough in the past that our current new wave of technology that revolutionized the way we view entertainment has not invaded our culture yet.

To be completely accurate in a modern setting, the protagonist of a movie would have to text her BFF details throughout the rising action of the plot.

Having the power of entertainment at one’s fingertips can mean constant distraction from anything unpleasant, but it also means getting out of your comfort zone is unusual.

That’s why I believe college is full of texting, ear bud-stuffing, movie-watching loners. I know this because my freshman year in college I was one of them.

I spent my nights not getting to know other students, but online watching episodes of my favorite shows. Sadly, I can attest that this is now the norm for people like me.

I guess what I’m saying is that I don’t want my MTV anymore. I want new relationships and new hobbies. I just took up recreational reading again, something I haven’t done since I got Netflix a year ago.

I’m attempting to stop fulfilling my parent’s stereotype that I’m always “buried in my phone” by putting myself out there without a touchscreen to hide behind. It’s tough, but rewarding, and it’s a price I can pay for a chance at a more interesting life.

Kari Smith is an history senior. She can be reached at karismith1811@gmail.com.

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