Because of the growth of social media in the last frew years, many users now live under the illusion of a highly social world. People sit in front of their PCs, laptops or tap away on their phones to interact with thousands of followers or “friends” that they have never met, and somehow consider themselves social. The irony.
The other day, I read a tweet from a lady describing a male handle as an “awesome man”. She had never met this fellow. Ever. How do you interact with someone via your 14-inch laptop or 4-inch smartphone and even think that you know them? Meet him first, go on a couple of dates, and if possible marry him. That perceived “awesomeness” might just fizzle away.
Friday nights on Twitter are the most amusing. You know how Friday night used to be – real people hanging out at real spots, getting real handshakes, hugs, cuddles, eating real food, and chatting over real drinks? Now, some people just sit at home and console themselves that they are hanging out by errr… “hanging out” on Twitter. Sigh.
When Nature Kicks Back
But nature can be vengeful. You can lie to yourself all you want. Sooner or later, the need for real companionship gets to you. Someone tweets, “I could use a real hug right now; not some virtual hugs that mean nothing”. There. Bang.
What exactly is a virtual hug? Nothing. A virtual kiss? I’m still scratching my head on that, but my easily excited mind suggests that it is something you send while imagining what it would be like to actually kiss the contact in question. No? Other definitions welcome.
You must all know by now that I love this Jesse Oguns guy. No; clean up your dirty minds. Not love in that way. But then, whose business is it how I choose to love him anyway? Please take a seat. Anyway, me, Jesse and my buddy, Nicole (MOBILITY’s BBM Group administrator) were exchanging tweets on Sunday (yes; I love Nicole dearly too, and you can let your heads swim as to how that works out too), when she offered hugs, but added, “Damn these e-hugs. Can’t someone get the real thing?”
There you go. The gadgets and virtual things just don’t get the job done. Jesse’s response was classic: “I’m in need of a real kiss myself. All these gadgets I surround myself with are darn so cold. Humans are the best”. End of discussion.
I love my gadgets, but I do not fool myself in thinking that chatting with someone on an HTC One X or Nokia PureView is socialising. These gadgets are tools for connecting. After connecting, then what? Meet, socialise, do business, collaborate, and generally enhance your life. I take almost every opportunity to meet with real people. At the end of the day, real people make the world go round.
Gadgets don’t kiss or hug. Come to think of it, incorporating those abilities into mobiles would be truly revolutionary. A phone that can kiss back and hug you, while producing some warmth to mimic the real thing? Ewwwwww!
But back to reality, don’t let your gadgets and social media turn you into a social misfit or recluse. I know that many people are no longer capable of mixing, having a proper conversation or enjoying good company. Because they spend most of their time with their gadget’s displays, they have lost the art of socialising. Sad. And very ironic.
Jesse, if you want a real kiss, set “P”, and hook up with someone the old-fashioned way. You can reach me in private for some dating and romance tips (though I suspect that you are not as naive as you make out to be). And dear Nicole, stop tweeting about getting a real hug. You know very darn well where to find me!
Founder of MobilityArena. Yomi’s journey in mobile started in 2001. Besides obsessing over mobile phones, he also started creating WAP sites (early mobile-friendly websites created with WML). He began writing about phones in 2004 and has been at it since then. He has owned over 200 devices, from Symbian, Palm, PocketPC/Windows Mobile, BlackBerry/BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, to Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.