Who does not have at least one portable media device? Virtually everyone from the middle class has one. We see them all the time; people with the trademark white earphones walking our streets, people in cafe’s surfing the web with their laptops, executives setting an appointment with their blackberries, children bowed down, playing their DS’s or PSP’s, and cars that have more screens than the average American home. It seems wherever people want to go, they bring along technology with them.
This phenomenon is more likely to be just a media craze rather than something created out of necessity. The “media craze” we’re seeing is making us slaves of our own creation. Yes it makes the world smaller by keeping everyone connected and entertained but it could also have a disconnecting effect. In this paper I would discuss the negative effects of this media craze. First by comparing today’s world with the past. Second, I would be then by citing my own personal experiences regarding the negative effects of the media craze.
Third, I would compare and contrast the pros of the media craze with its cons. And finally, conclude the paper with the thought that the media craze really is a bad thing for people based on the given examples. If They Have Done it, So Can We. We could live in our world perfectly even without these portable media devices. If people before us have lived perfectly without the aid of technology that we have today, then we could do the same. We were already doing this until late in the 90’s.
Ten years ago, the short messaging system or SMS was still in its early years, and people just use their mobile phones strictly for calling, it was enough but even that is something that we could live without because fifty years ago, the idea of calling someone from a pocket sized phone was more like science fiction than reality. People were able to go about their different businesses without the use of the mobile phone and still, the human race thrived. The same goes with other portable media devices such as laptops, portable DVD players or iPods. We’ve even reached the moon having a computing power of a modern day calculator.
If computing power is proportional to the distance we could reach the universe then an average person today can theoretically reach the end of our solar system or maybe even beyond. I believe the greatest advancements in human history were done in a time when mobile phones, the internet or what not, meant nothing. If people before our generation have done it, so can we. The Digital World: As I see it It is impossible not to see the digital revolution going on; it’s everywhere, from our own homes, to public places, to our workspaces—just about anywhere you can think of.
From my observation, this digital revolution is causing us humans to be slaves of our own gadgets. Pop Quiz: If you were to be stranded on a deserted island, what five things you would like to bring with you? Chances are some, if not most of the things you would mention would be a portable media device; an iPod or a laptop perhaps. It’s the media craze, people today can no longer live without listening to their favorite songs, watching their favorite movies, playing their computer games, or updating their facebook accounts. The iPod has become everyone’s portable digital music player.
It’s so popular that it has become synonymous to the word MP3. It wouldn’t be as popular today if people aren’t buying and using it. I, myself have one, and use it every day, making myself a victim too of the media craze. If I am to asses on average how much time people spend listening to music daily, I reckon it would be at least an hour per day on average. The saving grace about this slavery to music is that people tend to listen to music while on the move, meaning little or no time is wasted. Wasted time is the worst negative effect of this media craze.
Although one might argue that to kill time is the very purpose of these portable media devices, there is still a significant amount of time wasted on non-productive activities. For example, I’ve noticed that students tend to play video games on their PSP’s between classes or after classes. Time spent playing video games could be used to study or do other productive things or socialize with their peers. Instead, some students would rather play Grand Theft Auto for hours on end. Our homes are already dominated by computers, and yet when some people go out, they still carry with them laptops to stay “connected.
” It is apparently the “in” thing to do these days. Social networking sites are the ultimate time killer for adults who are not as hardcore gamers. Social networking sites allow people to see what everyone else is doing with their lives, and to broadcast themselves what they are doing. People spend a lot of time checking and updating multiple social networking sites. E. g. facebook, myspace, and twitter to name a few. It seems the virtual life has become just as important as the real, and in some cases, more. Interacting the usual, personal way, is no longer the normal thing to do.
People may feel they are connected with the rest of the world, but that world is in cyberspace, and in their immersion to the virtual world, they fail to notice that their real lives are becoming more and more isolated as they become addicted to the world of social networking. Yes, these kinds of media make our world more entertaining and allow people to stay connected to each other but if we look closely to what the media craze is doing, we would see that it is disconnecting us from the real world as we spend more time with it. Conclusion
Humans created gadgets so that they can serve us; they have done their purpose so far. But as more and more gadgets become portable, the temptation to bring them along with us wherever we go and use them increases. And with increased use comes increased dependence; the portability of gadgets has made us too dependent and attached to them; not only do we lose precious time that could be otherwise used to do more productive things or used as a time to spend with family and friends but we also disconnect ourselves with the real world. Works Cited
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