The invention of the internet has provided an innumerable amount of benefits to humans across the world since its inception in 1990. In the twenty-eight years since, humanity has never been more connected, being able to send a message across the world in an instant, a feat which could take weeks or months in the centuries past. We can speak with anyone from China to France, Russia to Israel, or the United Kingdom to the United States.
It’s easier to keep in touch with family and friends, and some have even found love through the ever expanding internet. However, this advancement comes at a price. Based on the study of this topic, it has become clear that the internet and technology that utilizes it makes emotional communication less transparent and difficult to interpret, disconnects us from those who we maintain interpersonal relationships with, and desensitizes us from those we affiliate with.
Technology and the internet have combined together for years to create a seemingly infinite number of resources and websites for usage to all who have access. More recently, one such resource is online dating sites. Sites like Tinder and Grindr provide the ability to set up relationships without the hassle of getting to know someone in person. But is this necessarily a good thing? In an article by M.D. Alex Lickerman, he explains the dangers of technology in relationships by saying how some may “subtly substituting electronic relationships for physical ones”, and how this may lead to a feeling of ‘social isolation’, a state in which an individual is in complete or near-complete lack of contact between an individual and society. In turn, he explains how people should avoid saying things they would be uncomfortable in person over text.
This helps encourage confronting others in a mature manner, and increases transparency with those we associate with. Younger members of the 21st century have taken to the latest forms of communication, being email, texting, video chat and the like by storm, unlike the past centuries of human existence, where communication was only realistically possible by face-to-face interaction. Physical and intrapersonal interaction has been the standard for all of our time on this planet, but this has rapidly changed in the few decades, though this not exactly an improvement. Communication through technology can remove any and all ability to effectively communicate, by disabling one’s ability to use their charisma, intellect, and intra personal relationship skills altogether. Not to mention that body language, which makes up at least 55% of all communication (Thompson), is completely lost while using an electronic device to communicate.