Tuesday, October 31, 2006

MySpace Rant!

God bless MySpace - I just don't get it... Is it narcissism, self-promotion, loneliness?

I am a total technophile and a lover of e-communications and everything nerdy - but "social networking" when it can be totally social-less and disassociated from real relationships just seems hollow. If you want to know how I REALLY feel, ask me in person.

Have we really advanced as people (especially as a spiritual people) when we remove ourselves from intimate personal contact? My training in pastoral counseling says that most (non-chemical) social disorders result from a lack of authentic and loving relationships. Is MySpace adding to the notion that genuine relationships involving vulnerability, risk and resultant trust are meaningless? If so, I fear it will only add to the number of people who must resort to a lifetime of medication to treat depression and social phobias.

MySpace as a cheap form of advertisement for bands and authors, yes. As a way to connect people in meaningful ways beyond "oh, my god you are sooooo cool and I am so cool for thinking you are cool. Isn't that cool?" Sorry, I don't see it.

Having a rare strongly opinionated moment,
-gb

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Gregg,

I could not agree with you more. My biggest concern is the effect it has upon our young people and today's youth. The temptation to "network" with someone you've never met before, be someone you've never been, or simply enjoy the attention of someone you have no idea who they are, is very concerning. It's almost replaced the use of the telephone and talking with your friends for endless minutes. Now you can post a profile on line for the whole world to see, tell everyone in the world where you go to school, live, etc., along with your comments. It's too easy for someone out there to harm a child, (yes even though they are teens, they still are children - spoken from the mother of teenagers.) I guess,it's the same old adage of, "nothing will ever happen to me". There are also too many parents who choose not to educate themselves in this arena therefore being unable to guide their child in to the world of the "internet". I could go on and on on this subject, as you can probably guess by now. : ) In addition,
I've also witnessed the teens texting each other while in the same room with the person they are texting! This leads to even more disconnect with each other and the lack of development that results from human face to face contact & simple societal replationships.
Where will it lead? I do not know.
But I do know, it will lead somewhere.

J Bell said...

Narcissism or Networking?

Myspace is a fun and great community. And I myself have re-defined my reasons for it's use more than once. But there is one question I can't escape...Narcissism or Networking?

We'd be lying to ourselves not to think that there isn't a tad bit of narcissism to this whole thing. Yes, we are able to connect with friends as well as make a few new ones, and find new music that otherwise we wouldn't have known about. It also gives us a creative platform of expression via blogging. But as I browse the millions of profiles, I see people who are trying to define 'who' they are (some in a desperate fashion). People carving out a myspace 'identity' that may or may not be true to one's own self. People trying to shed their esteem issues. Either by way of how many 'friends' they have, or even how many comments they receive. We all love having friends, and we all love the little mypsace 'post-it' comments that tell us that people are thinking of us, but should/does it affect 'who' we am and 'how' we feel?

Narcissism and Networking have 'tied the knot', and consummated their 'union'. I hope they have a pre-nup, since I'm hoping they will soon separate.

j bell said...

"but should/does it affect 'who' we am and 'how' we feel? "

Edit from comment #2:

"who we ARE". I'm not sure how 'am' got in there. I think parenting toddlers can really mess with your grammar and spelling. :)