Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Online - Offline

Google devta ko pranaam!There is no disputing the daily quota of internet we all need. Without checking the FB a
ccount or gmail or some specific sites, I feel as if I haven't brushed my teeth or eaten my breakfast. Thanks to the internet, a few key strokes I have all the answers. Or can just 'like' or leave a one-line response to a life-altering event instead of being polite and actually calling / writing to wish or discuss it. I know of people who even 'like' condolence messages. Quick fix right?!

No writing: No letters AT ALL. Not even emails anymore, its all FB posts, tweets and SMS / Whatsapp messages. For example its a dear friend's b'day today. 10 years earlier I would've written out a long email to him. 5 years earlier, I would've called him at midnight, or at least spoken to him. Today, esp since he is not on FB or Whatsapp, I suppose I'll send him an SMS wishing him and hopefully talk to him sometime today.  In a larger sense, I guess being 'hooked on' all the time lets an individual read lots more and even express better via blogs et al. Its easier to hide behind a terminal sometimes than go out and talk in person!

Split Personality  I feel like I have 2 lives - one online and one offline. In my case they aren't too different from each other, but I don't know if I can say the same about everyone. I have a friend who sounds so cheerful on FB that you'd think she is all sunshine and light. But meet her, you'll realize in an hour or two that she is depressive, tired and pessimistic, at least at the moment.

What about tomorrow? I am a bit worried about my kids too... if FB has changed my thinking itself (sometimes I think in posts, sometimes in blogposts too!) then I wonder how their lives would be? Maybe 20 years from now, all you'll need to do is think and the messages will be transmitted in embedded chips to the brains of the ones 'linked' to you! You don't have to talk or write at all! And at that time, I would be a fuddy-duddy, still refusing to let go of my pen and paper and buying increasingly expensive books, instead of just downloading them.

I still make it a point to talk to my friends instead of merely communicating via FB or Twitter. I do make many many new online friends and sometimes even encourage the friendship to transcend to offline and real relationships instead of merely being 2 dimensional. With abundant caution of course. Sometimes I feel I should completely erase my digital footprint and not let the internet-alien take over my life, but not strong enough now to step out completely.

How has your life changed? 

Do you think in tweets? Or posts? 

Are you brave enough to go off FB forever? 

Do you believe you use it judiciously? 

Are you worried for your kids? 


  1. I was an FB addict, but my job requires me to be keying in at the system for over 8 hours a day; hence I consciously keep away from the PC/Lappie for the remainder of the day :)

    Just Another Blog

  2. Yes, I think about my blog all the time. All the things/events around me... I keep weighing if they are blog-worthy!
    I have seen a split personality like your friend too... and she has the same characteristics... the online personality is so lively, cheerful, pictures with friends at all high profile places of the the town... but in real life she is sad and depressive... the smiling pics are a facade! :|

  3. Of course, I do have two and offline. Online friends have become my real friends and we meet on and off. Yes, I am hooked. Stopped reading newspaper...kick me! But, have restricted myself only to FB though I have twitter, pintrest, stumble upon and other accounts.
    My daughter loves reading real books. Though I have downloaded kindle app...I seldom read on it.

    Life has changed for the better.

  4. Aha, fodder for thought...Can I get off of FB? - I can, but I won't for obvious reasons. It substitutes the news channel;-) and observing FB makes me get a deeper insight into people in general. Whenever I get an 'intelligent' or 'emotional' idea, I am occupied in making it work for my Blog. LOL - Yes, I worry about the future of Kids - specially because reading has become so alien to them..and if they do read, it is not the old world literature or even modern literature anymore. All their time is occupied on the 'i' devices. I do make a conscious effort to cut it's influence in my kid's life. Time alone can tell if I succeed:-P

  5. I agree we are leading more online lives than offline . We believe the more the number of "likes" we get , the more popular we are . Just how weighty the situation is came light to me one day when I found chatting with my nephew who just lived two houses down the street on Yahoo. Precisely for that reason I keep deactivating my FB A/C at regular intervals :) But as you say it is a question of seeking a balance :)

  6. You've raised some fantastic questions, Meera. Self-awareness is what helps us keep the balance.

  7. I wrote a detailed post on the same issue but can't cut copy paste on mobile
    If interested will let u know
    I m hooked to fb like never before specially this year as I started staying at home but slowly un hooking myself
    I write on this me vs ME real Vs virtual
    Anyway I too make it a point to talk to ppl who Matter
    Good post
    Good luck :)

  8. I am a very social person. I love meeting people, learning about them. There was a time when I used to tweet like no one's business so much so that twitter blocked my account on a couple of occasions for a few hours. When technology gives you avenues to express it also makes sure that you give it up. The kind of people, topics, conversations started to get off-putting and I did withdraw from it.

  9. I am brave enough to go off facebook but not off twitter or blogging. I believe I will go mad. Just yesterday husband darling took my photon away from me and I went crazy!! :D :D