Are Our Devices Changing Us as People?

Just because we can doesn’t necessarily mean that we should.  This was my general feeling after listening to this speaker.  I really appreciate that she is clearly a brilliant professor from MIT and suggests that we as a society need to open a dialogue about how we are socially changing as a result of the advances in technology.  The line that just kept rolling in my mind was how technology can create an “illusion of companionship with out the demands of friendship.”  We listened to this podcast with our two children.  It lays an excellent foundation for discussing friendship. We talked to our kids about examples in our lives when friends have gone above and beyond to help us.  Our best friends from college flew to Florida from Colorado and spent their summer vacation boxing up our house and helping us move.  It wasn’t fun for them or convenient but they did it because we all love each other and friends are there in good and bad times.  Friendship is more than people commenting on their friends’ photographs on facebook.  Friendships need to be nurtured and maintained.  I think that we as a society should be mindful of our changing behavior and how technology is altering our interactions with each other.   I also appreciated that she had a very different stand earlier in her career and has since changed it.   I think it is healthy when people evolve and grow and change their mind as life and education presents new data.  What do you think?  In what ways is technology changing us for the better? In what ways is technology changing our society for the worse?

sherryturkle_z