The Blogging Paradox: Are blogs bringing humanity together?

From the last post about blogging and other social software, readers’ comments were both quite interesting and varying in perspective. We had someone saying that having email keeps them more in touch with people (more so than previous technologies like the telephone) who otherwise might be forgotten in the winds of time and a busy life. They also put forward the notion about the ease of forwarding a joke along to everyone they know, which caused them to ‘stay in touch’ easier (so much easier than calling everyone, getting in a sociable state of mind, and touching base/small talk before the joke gets told). Plus, imagine how boring the joke would become if you had to repeat it over and over again…

Then there was the reader who spoke about the new ways of communicating to anonymous people via blogging and its inherent commenting system, as well as text messages on the phone etc. However, they also wondered what might be lost in these new processes. They said that they now communicated with more people than ever using new technologies, and that the lines have blurred between ‘real’ and ‘virtual’ friends. However, what might be lost that was taken for granted in the ‘days of old’? Do more contacts mean weaker bonds between one another? I mean, we only have so much energy to share around right?

This is where the next reader came in. They emphatically expressed their belief in the ease in which people now communicate, but also pointed out the laziness that these newer ‘easy’ technologies are creating. Harking back to a time even before telephones, they spoke of stronger relationships with real people, as opposed to ones gained in the ‘virtual’ realm. Another great point was the fact that all this new communication could be causing a lot more misunderstanding than in the days of pure face-to-face contact. I know from experience that my emails are often misinterpreted-and I’ve gotten in some real trouble because of it!

Another interesting point or two was related to this issue of ease of communication. What of the children of the future? Will our offspring simply disregard others who have opposing views with a quick click on the delete button in their email?

Does the Internet cause different types of people in society to communicate and work together more, or is it making it easier to segregate and only relate to people in select groups that have similar interests as ourselves?

By Jesse S. Somer