Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Cowardly use of Technology

I am the first to be a fan of technology. I like gadgets. I carry a mobile phone, especially when I travel. I use Facebook to stay in touch with relatives who live far away and old friends I'd lost touch with. I've used Instant Messaging in the past and am prone to sending off a quick SMS. Email - where would I be without email? But I think like in the rest of your life, these things should be used the same way you would treat people in person. I have found that it's easier for people to be mean to others and say things they wouldn't in person, via text message, email or post it all over Facebook. To say things in the heat of the moment, that they may consider more carefully in person, or if they had to get in the car and drive to the person's house before saying it. It's cowardly. It's mean. It's rude. The behaviour in many ways is worse than if done in person, as it leaves people without a comeback. Without being able to address the issue. Without being able to have a discussion and put their side across. And many times I find that if you were to address them in person about something they've said in some techno form, it makes it worse. They'll deny they meant that, or they phrased it badly or you're blowing it out of proportion. I am the last person to like confrontation. It literally brings me to my knees, I shake that badly. But I'd rather have a chance to have my say or defend myself, than be left hanging, hurt and wounded at the other end of a computer. I know I've been guilty at times of telling people things via email that I'd find difficult to do in person. But not necessarily mean things. Things that I'd find hard to find a moment to get them to listen. Or to hear me. Or for me to be articulate enough in person. But I won't do it in the heat of the moment. I take a long time to consider what I say before sending it. Give them time to read it and then meet up to talk about it. But they're not mean things - usually just issues deep and painful for me. People that use technology to harrass, insinuate, hurt, accuse, or make trouble, are bad mannered, rude and cowardly, hiding behind a device, with little thought for the people concerned. Literally people become objects, become without humanity, become impersonal and partly 'unreal', when technology is involved. And people aren't any of these things. Think everyone, before you reach for your favourite gadget and send out that hurtful barb to friend, family or foe.

1 comment:

  1. so agree, so easy to not think before we react...
    hope your doing okay