Thursday, November 05, 2009

If a tree falls and no one tweets about it...

I know exactly where hundreds of my friends, acquaintances and ex-boyfriends are right now. I know what my coworker is listening to several cubes over. And I know what you ate last night for dinner...with whom...and what celebrity was sitting next to you. You likely know even more about me.

Because when something funny (or sad, or thrilling, or quite possibly mundane) happens these days, we are all rushing to our desktops and mobile phones to let the rest of our thousand person networks know about it.

It is human nature to seek acknowledgment. Even before computers, how many of us would wish our good deeds to go unnoticed, our funny stories to go untold, and so on? But with the rise of Facebook and Twitter and all the systems that interconnect these multiple social networks, it seems that a feeling is not valid, an action not significant, a sick family member not really disheartening, unless we can gain the feedback and cheers and sympathies of our peers.

This realization is not a new one. Many have already commented on the direct relationship between increasing use of social media and our increasing levels of narcissism. But what I really want to know is...

If you feel something in the forest...and no one's around to tweet about it...does it warrant feeling at all?

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