Myspace/Facebook Effect

Kyle Reed // @kylereed

Ya, you have heard this before and have read the articles, but I would like to hear what you think.
I was driving into work today and heard on the radio the discussion of this article about Myspace/Facebook/Texting/Email effecting youth. Several teachers called into the show and talked about how students in class are texting constantly. They said, often times homework is put on hold to answer a text or go on facebook/myspace…
Side note: why do people still use myspace? It is awful. Unless you are in a band, switch over to facebook people.
As I was going through my morning routine (found here) I was looking at Drudge this morning and saw this article “Social websites harm childrens brains” (Click to read).
So after hearing about it on the radio and now reading about it I was wondering if this is really as big of an issue as people are making it out to be?

Weigh in Here

Not my actual feet

Not my actual feet

Here is my 2 cents worth….
With all the communication going through the air we are starting to learn how to communicate with our hands and not with our mouths. I have found it much easier to read twitter updates, then to actually get the update from the person themselves. Maybe this is why I think it is one of the hardest things to remain good friends with someone who lives more than 40 miles away. I have found that with texting, email, blogging, and now twitter that I am much more prone to have a conversation through one of these avenues rather than sitting down with the person. I hate that, I dispise that, but for some reason it is easier that way.
A lot of it has to do with convenience for me, especially when someone lives really far away. But for some reason there seems to be less of a commitment over the wireless world than in person. I do think that students are missing out on valuable lessons that are learned through one of one communication and the affect of texting/myspace will be felt heavily in the next 25 years when this generation starts to have kids.

Am I just blowing smoke here, or do you feel the same?


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Kyle Reed

Posts Twitter

I create websites, conversations, and ideas. Advocate for the 20 somethings. Looking to connect everyone to a mentor. Married to my best friend, Ginny. I like my coffee black and my dog Jack. I currently live in Nashville and work at Sony Music/Provident in Nashville
  • Nikomas Perez

    I don’t think students have less face-to-face contacts. They have just gained more contacts that aren’t face-to-face (which makes the face-to-face contacts seem dwarfed). In some cases, I’m sure there are those who no longer have face-to-face contacts with people that they would be seeing regularly…which is definitely unhealthy, but not the norm IMHO.

    And of course this is all backed up by scientific data (aka: my assumptions).

  • Lee Coate

    You’re blowing smoke and don’t think you even actually believe what you wrote. Bro – it’s like the whole birth of the internet = the end of the world thing. When the internet was first thrust upon us, naysayers were talking about how we would never leave our homes again, blah, blah, blah.

    Your own premise is the power of these social networks. It is hard to remain close to people more than 40 miles away. And honestly, I’m not sure we would be communicating at all if it were not for these avenues.

    I now have numerous conversations everyday with peeps who I would not connect with otherwise because of distance, time zones, and most importantly (get this)… lack of context. Most of the reason why we drift away from friendships and community is lack of context. i have no idea what you’re doing, you have no idea what I’m doing. I have no idea what you are thinking, you have no idea what I am thinking. On and on. Without the ability to meet at Chili’s every couple weeks, we are done as friends just out of nature attrition. But with these birth of the these new points of connection, we can remain in context.

    The dangers, abuses, etc. are a part of every medium… start with television, food, sex and move forward. With any new thing, abuses will be rampant. But the abuses of some and the newness of it all does not ultimately take away from it’s power when used correctly.

    Weighing in…

  • kylereed

    Good point Lee. Maybe i got caught up in the hype. I do see what you are saying. And I think the biggest thing is context. You are exactly right. But, when we have a 140 character conversation on twitter it is hard to see the context isn’t it? I see where you are coming from on keeping up with people, but what I am struggling with is sometimes it feels like this is the only way we can do it. Context is huge, and man I wish I could eat at chillis once a week with anyone (big mouth bites), but it seems like people would rather talk over a blog about big issues rather than meet in person. Maybe because of time, mostly because of distance, but I miss the good old face to face conversations that I had in College with my dormmates. Maybe I am still a little bitter they all live hundreds of miles away.

  • http://dont, granpa

    Are you not living proof of what blogging and texting does to the brain

  • Joshua Long

    I think blogging is a different conversation from texting/twitter/facebook. For me, blogs bring health to our relationships. 200 years ago, people met together to discuss important issues about philosophy, politics, and faith. It seems that over the last 50-100 years (before internet) people stopped these public discussions. There was a void. Now, it is socially acceptable to ask important questions via a blog without seeming stuffy or weird. Try having a serious discussion about philosophy or the arts with a group of friend you hang out with (in non-cyber-space) and see what reactions you get. I do wish we could talk about these kinds of things in a gathering (rather than simply receiving info via TV/Radio), but it seems unlikely for now. Until then, I will enjoy the rich dialogue of the blog.

  • Kyle L Reed

    Great points here Josh. A blog to me is the same as Mcdonalds to an 70 year old man. Meet there every morning and talk about things with other old guys. Good times had by all, and great coffee.

  • Angela Neff

    Kyle — my thought is this. Technological communication assumes that words are all there is to communication and that you communicate emotions, expressions, etc. with punctuation marks and capital letters. Communication is an art — of making yourself known to someone and studying them to know them. We can keep up with information through technology, but are we really communicating? I know I’m from a different generation, but I don’t think we are. We are just sharing information.

  • Tyler

    Kyle, remember when you went to college and I left HCC? How long was it until I talked to you after that? 2 years?… when I accidentally spotted you at the Willow Arts Conference that I had no idea you were attending. And since then, you and I have only had one face-to-face interchange b/c I made the effort to drive down to LCC.

    Now, I get to read up on your “thoughts about nothing.” I know where you work and even get a little insight into your life one little bit at a time…even engage in conversation…though slowly.

    Point is that this is all infinitely more than what we’d have if there was no blog/FB/twitter…which is nothing at all. It is certainly no replacement of “in the flesh” connections, but we have been able to bridge the gap of space greatly with these social utilities.

    So you can’t see my reactions, hear my voice, or wrestle me (or w/e you had in mind), but at least you know I’m alive. If it will make you feel better I can cut you off from all these gizmos and we can go back to forgetting the other existed…since you know, you need to smell my armpits to REALLY communicate. :P

  • angelaneff

    Kyle, your friend above is making my point exactly! You can’t smell over texting, twitter, facebook or a blog …

  • Ryan P

    Here’s what I think. Cyber-communication is great. It helps stay connected to people that we otherwise wouldn’t stay connected to. But the kind of communication that happens on Facebook, Myspace, and Twitter is not the kind of communication that happens in real relationships. The biggest problem that I see is that we have teenagers who spend hours talking to friends on these platforms, but who haven’t said one word to their parents because they don’t really know how to communicate to them. What do you think will happen when that generation gets married? They’ve spent their whole life typing their feelings and logging-out when they get too mad, and they won’t know how to really communicate with a live person. These new paths of communication are great, but they become a problem when they take the place of actually sitting down with someone and talking to them.

  • kylereed

    Ryan, I think you are right on point here. I especially liked this comment:
    “The biggest problem that I see is that we have teenagers who spend hours talking to friends on these platforms, but who haven’t said one word to their parents because they don’t really know how to communicate to them. What do you think will happen when that generation gets married?”
    Good question here.
    It was interesting to see last night at church the amount of students on their cell phones. My favorite was two girls standing right next to each other, texting to someone else and yet somehow having a conversation with each other. I always wonder, who are they texting?

  • O

    Ryan-If the kids parent’s had Facebook/Myspace/Twitter/Text then they wouldn’t be in the dark now would they. Chalk one up for the parent’s fault.

    Kyle-I don’t remember meeting your grandpa, but I love him. He will forever me dear to my heart for that comment.