I believe Social Media really became popular in the early 2000s. From Yahoo Chat to My Space to Facebook, Blackberry and the like… the list is in the hundreds. Now we are even asking each other “What’s Up” without getting to see the response. Our world has changed dramatically since the Internet and the various innovations that have been brewed mostly in the West to satisfy our need to be connected to other human beings.
Off the Internet and such Social Media I understand business deals have been struck, new friendships developed, waves of fame and even marriages have been born. These days dating websites have become more popular than Mickey Mouse. I hear it sometimes works and I even know a couple who met through a Blackberry group and are very happily married. Amazing isn’t it?
You know, maybe someone should try being married over the Internet! Live in different cities, chat on What’s Up, talk to each other on Skype, comment on each other’s Google + walls, share videos of each other’s daily events on YouTube, attend Church online and so on. Sounds like something from a movie, right? I would not be too surprised if someone in the US attempts this in the near future.
Well, in my opinion, I doubt if it would work because something would be obviously missing: TOUCH. Technology is yet to replicate the effect of a human touch without physical contact. Even with our video calls and chats and all, we still find there is a world of difference between talking face to face and using Social Media. The façade is removed, the body language is true to life, both parties feel the same temperature and the same touch from the atmosphere. It’s just different.
Some of us (including yours truly) have the habit of responding to PINGs while in a meeting or while talking face to face with someone because it simply has become that: a habit. After reading this, I hope you do value a little more the Human Touch when compared to the attempt of Social Media to fill the gap.