The Digital Divide

The Digital Divide

Is social media driving apart true social interaction?

In the late 80s, computers were at the forefront of new innovation. The PC and Mac began to shape what would eventually be the inspiration for a new generation. Computers helped businesses grow by being utilized for the most basic tasks, data and word processing to storing and archiving files.

Fast-forward to 2014, the mobile era is booming and the great Android/Apple war is waging on to earn the greatest reward: unique users. Your digital device of choice aside, there is an underlying theme overtaking it all like an epidemic. Social media.

From Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, WhatsApp, etc… There is no denying the fact that one of these apps lives on average on every mobile phone user out there to date. These apps are meant to “bring friends closer.” However, it seems that living in the digital verse is much easier than actually hanging out with friends and family. Didn’t make that birthday party? No worries, the photo album with over 100 photos should keep you up to speed.

Should future generations be worried? My two year old niece has an iPad Mini, which she received as a birthday gift. She operates it with ease and its astonishing. As a child growing up in the early nineties, the idea of staying inside the house was not fun and to be honest boring. All I wanted to do was hangout with my friends from school and play outside.

I was fortunate to experience this as a child, now I can’t help but think what our future generations will bring us. With the use of social media, it is much easier to virtually “hangout” with friends via social media. Social media is driving apart interaction and users are glued to their mobile screens looking for the next update and item to share. I can say that that is how I have become myself.

Instead of going out and seeing people, I share my daily updates on Snapchat and add items to my story. I curate content and share items on my Facebook page and I post a link to my Twitter to get users to contribute to my retro video games collection. Does this classify as social interaction? By todays’ standards, it does. What will be the next step in social interaction?

Its inevitable to say that, the innovation of new technology will continue to grow at an alarming rate. The next trend companies are unveiling is wearable devices and health monitoring devices. That is only the beginning of the next technological innovation which will continue to drive social interaction apart or possibly close the gap and bring us closer to each other.

What will classify as social interaction in five years? Share your thoughts below.