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Young professionals of wichita antisocial media blog post

February 2, 2015

Anti-Social Media

By Jon Schrick, Ambassadors Action Team Member

Meg Foreman - YPW Program & Marketing Manager

Raise your hand if you’ve ever planned to sit down and check Facebook for 10 minutes… then you look at the clock and 45 minutes have gone by. If you’re honest that’s probably every one between the ages of 15 and 35 (myself included). Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter is useless. They are great tools for staying connected and sharing important information; not to mention the obvious advertising benefits for businesses. But I think it’s starting to become a problem when I can spend an hour looking at the new posts on my news feed and still only be halfway through.

I wouldn’t mind spending an hour if I was looking at news articles posted by the Wichita Eagle, breaking news from KSN or MSNBC, or even to see which of my long lost friends just got engaged; but I really could’ve done without the Miley Cyrus “Wrecking Ball” meme (for the third  time this week). I don’t need to be tagged in a photo (with 49 other people) that says “Tag someone you care about.” If you really care: the next round is on you. And after that Miley Cyrus meme I’m going to need a double.

Then there are cell phones. One of the greatest innovations of our time; or at least they were back when my phone could bend in half as a NORMAL function, had more than one button, and its primary purpose was to make and receive phone calls. I know what you’re thinking: “Just send them a Facebook message! Why would anyone make a phone call on a cell phone? That’s just absurd!” I understand, though. Making a phone call would mean you would have to stop listening to Taylor Swift on repeat for more than 30 seconds. Just to be clear, we prefer to send 100 messages over the next 24 hours just to avoid a possible awkward silence during a phone call. Also, I feel it’s pertinent to point out that this is the same generation that absolutely LOATHED typing papers in high school and college.

We text instead of talk, tweet instead of call, “Like” instead of enjoy, and “Ask to be their friend” instead of meet. None of those actions require another human being, and I struggle with understanding why we call it SOCIAL media. If there ever is to be a War with Machines someday, I’d say the machines have a pretty good head-start.

Seriously though, whatever happened to grabbing a drink with a friend? Going to see a movie? Or just watching the game at home on T.V. together? If you’re struggling to come up with a New Years’ Resolution, try this one: put down the electronic device and walk away. Instead of texting the person you’re not with, start a conversation with the person next to you. I promise they won’t bite… hard.

As you read this on your cell phone, here are a couple tips on how to “unplug”:

  1. There’s no app for that. Start by deleting all those social media apps from your phone. Your relationship with your phone may suffer, but your relationship with your friends and family (and yourself) will prosper.
  2. Walk it off. When your cravings for Kim Kardashian’s Twitter feed reveal themselves, go for a walk. Better yet, go for a run! Those New Year’s resolutions won’t stand a chance this year!

Desperate times… When all else fails change your social media passwords to something you CAN’T remember (like your girlfriend’s birthday). Write down the password and put it some place you won’t lose it at home such as: a jewelry box, night stand, security safe, under your coffee maker, or on top of your kitchen cabinets. Let’s see just how much you need Beyonce’s beef with Jay-Z when it’s no longer convenient to get an update.

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