I first joined Facebook just a few years ago, very much a laggard to the whole social media concept. I refused to believe (and still do) that my life would be interesting to any but my closest family. Even when I eventually signed up it was only as a useful tool for work I was doing a as a swimming instructor. It allowed me to connect to a group of teachers all helping each other with ideas or problems they were encountering and this is what really opened my mind up about the power of social media in general.
Beyond the mundane world of the minutia of peoples daily lives a wealth of ideas and information just waiting to be discovered, shared and discussed. When the discussions take place you can access a truly diverse group of people, really making the world smaller and helping to spread support. This side of social totally hooks me!
Now as I use various social media daily I see even more possibilities. Still the most random thing about Social media is that it seems to make some people even more closed minded. Just another place to vent their ire without any desire to entertain new ideas, or listen to others even if they don’t agree. Of course it has as well meant that absolutely everyone has an opinion on absolutely everything and now we are forced to hear it all! Despite all this I really do think that social has an exciting potential to propel the world forward on its next leap.
Let me explain….
If you have ever taken part in a Digital Detox or Social Break (you can read about Lauren’s experience of a digital detox here) you will know that doing so really highlights the interesting point that mobile technology, the internet and social media are all a supreme enhancement to our everyday lives if we can remember to use them wisely. I am totally in agreement of how addictive checking your phone and social can be, in a quiet moment I almost always whip out my phone! Keeping the compulsive overuse under control though, can mean that the full benefits of this amazing technology can shine through.
Just think about it the ability to connect to the vast mountain of information at a touch of the finger is a truly incredible thing. Conversations across ages, borders and prejudices can take place instantaneously. You could be talking to someone who possibly doesn’t even speak your language but is translating your messages through their computer, how incredible! You see the power of it all the time as belongings and even people are reunited, amazing stories seen and shared by all and here in lies the potential.
Change is Coming!
I think the younger generations are definitely switching on to the power they wield through social media, the kind of change they can affect, real change to the world when they group together on social and push for it. What more could a truly open and supportive online community do, using the best of each generation, the best of each country, the best ideas, and share it to all corners of the world, this is the potential I would like to see harnessed, this is the potential that is exciting, the power to exact real change.
Of course as all the best superhero’s will tell you with great power comes great responsibility! We must remember that behind the computers are real humans and we tend to make mistakes, not all of which we should be punished for. Weald your power with caution young ones!
I am converted to social media if only so I can have a ring side seat as the world is changed. The social media age is certainly going to make a super interesting history lesson one day!
Have you taken part in a digital detox that has changed your perspective? Do you believe in the power of social? I would love to hear from you, is mine an impossible dream?