Category Archives: Social Media

Relationships and the Internet

CommunityLately I have been doing a lot of thinking about how the Internet and its related technologies/services impact our lives and most importantly our relationships.  I am (you can even ask my family/friends) a lover of computers and technology.  I enjoy learning, using and exploring technologies.

As I have had time to reflect on some of the technologies and how they have impacted my life and those around me I raise the question:  ARE ALL INTERNET SERVICES/TECHNOLOGIES BENEFICIAL TO SOCIETY, INDIVIDUALS, AND MORE RELATIONSHIPS?

As I have had time to reflect on some of the technologies and how they have impacted my life and those around me I raise the question:  ARE ALL INTERNET SERVICES/TECHNOLOGIES BENEFICIAL TO SOCIETY, INDIVIDUALS, AND MORE RELATIONSHIPS?

My Honest, heartfelt answer: NO!

Let me lay out some of my thoughts on the pros and cons and then explain my position.

Pros:

The Internet and its various services provide us with a way to quickly connect via email, IM, Twitter, Facebook and to know what is going on with others.  It provides a place to quickly and easily find information.  It provides for connection that may not be otherwise feasible due to distance, time zones, and finances.  They provide for networking with others who can help you with your current job or schooling and provide you with much needed information. An easy way to share information with people in your lives and the whole world.  Relationally it allows one to be instantly in touch with people, to provide information and contacts that would not be otherwise possible with just a piece of paper and the telephone.

Cons:

Alone

-Distracts from personal face to face interactions and relationship.

-Provides an easy emotional escape from the realities and frustrations that come with relationships

-Pornography, which is easily accessible and destroys relationships.

-Providing too much information and jeopardizing your own/families privacy and safety.

-Does not promote true community, but instead fosters isolation and a false sense of connection.

-Takes time away from family, friends and the relationships that should truly matter.

I think that as we evaluate our own use of the Internet and “Social Media” we need to be careful to make sure that our use does not start to impact our relationships in a negative way.  We all need to be able to appropriately interact with others in a face to face context and not just in “cyber space”.  Marriages, families, and work relationships cannot successfully exist without regular face to face interaction.

There is not set guidelines of what is appropriate across the board, but instead, each individual must evaluate their life situation and job and consider what would be the most appropriate plan for using technology.  Our decisions should be first and foremost based on our family and relationships with them and last of all should be based on our job or desire for recognition by others.  Life is not a popularity contest.  Our first and greatest commandment is found in Matthew 22: 37-3937Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]

I hope my thoughts provoke each of you to revisit in your mind what is appropriate for you and your life when it comes to the Internet and Social Media.

~tfkr