January 26, 2014

Social Media: Too Much Information? ~ Steve Davies

In a world where communication runs faster than a speeding bullet I struggle over the dichotomy of whether the dissemination of information so readily is such a good thing.

The likes of Facebook and Twitter have an estimated 1.9 billion and 645,750,000 registered users respectively and status’s and posts fly through the stratosphere often without a thought on the impact it may have on its audience. This rapid-fire scatter gun runs with such speed and velocity, bouncing to and fro like a pinball, what sort of effect can a thoughtless share or re-tweet have?

Of course not all take this projected course, with the majority forethought is applied and consideration for those about to receive. Sharing information can also obviously have a profoundly positive effect and so much can be gained.

The nub of what I’m getting at here is the speed from thought to release.

I’m personally down with the poet John de La Fontaine who said, ” Patience and time do more than strength and passion”. Less is more as the old adage goes. What perhaps requires a greater degree of discrimination is a harnessing of impulse and ego over restraint and servility.

My point distills down to the Buddhist principals of cause and effect, a negative cause can take time to manifest its full form and so stepping back to consider the consequences of one’s actions is as important as taking a deep breath.

What can exacerbate the problem of the text phenomena is the absence of a human or ‘real’ element that can transform a statement from one thing into something entirely different. Without the human touch to bring something to life an opinion can be taken to mean something different entirely.

Along with Billy Idol I’m a signed up member of the Generation X that initiated a surge of adrenaline to be inherited by Generation Y. The real root of it all started with the industrial revolution.

This surely changed the projection of mankind like a comet.

With respect to the accelerated text, technology changed the map beyond comprehension. The rate of progression seems to have got so out of control that we can no longer catch up with it.

Perhaps a slow drip process is the answer—a pause for thought before delivering.

To ask the question, ‘am I contributing positively or negatively’? And ‘is what I’m about to say really necessary’? We’ve got all the time in the world really, sometimes its nice to simply rest with that.


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Assistant Editor: Richard May/Editor: Catherine Monkman

Photo: courtesy of the author

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Steve Davies