Sunday, January 6, 2013

Coming Undone In the Digital Age

One of the very best things about using a computer is its offer to undo anything you've done. At least on the keyboard.

Yes, there are instances when you don't catch an error or an unpolitic remark in time, and then, poof! - it's published or it has vanished, against your will or better judgment.

But, if you are paying attention, this is a cool tool that - were it available in "real" life - could eliminate so much pain and misunderstanding and some of those terrible entanglements that proceed from a hasty or too-loose tongue.

While life in the digital array does give you a chance to reconsider, this can be a dangerous crutch to rely on. We have to live in the real world and we still are held accountable for our errors in the foot-in-mouth disease department.

As much as social networking has convinced us that we are talking to real people whom we really know, we don't really know them and we have no physical clues as to what makes them tick or how they will react to a variety of things. That makes "undo" even more important. But we have to remember that key does not exist in the world where we breathe air.

On Face Book, where we interact as a community, this key probably isn't used as much as it could be.....but I have to admit that I find that refreshing. I like the spontaneity of the interchange and I am often amused to find things revealed that you would never have believed of a person....good and bad.

And there, for the "bad" department, our thoughtful digital vehicle has provided an application. It's called the "unfriend" button.

I have to say I like making friends more than I do un-friending them, but still....when life can be so full of irritants that can't be neutralized, a flick of a switch is a very satisfying solution.Too bad we can't do that with whole years that are full of devastation and frustration, pain and heartache. 

Since we can't, our only option appears to be to try hard to make as few errors as possible.

Let's hope 2013 is one of the years we can look back on and say: "That's a keeper."



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  2. Jo Ann, I often think about the mistakes and things that I cannot undo in my past. More than I probably should. And yes, I think I would undo many of them if it were possible. I hear folks say that they wouldn't "change a thing" if they had the chance. I find that hard to believe though.

    The ability to have and use the Internet is a wonderful thing for me to use at this time in my life. For many things other than social networking of course. But via blogs and social networking, I have a chance to meet people and 'speak' what I think in a more 'understandable' way that shows the real me. I can also 'listen' and 'see' people better in a way, when they take time to share thoughts and personal insight. On the other hand, I can also 'see' an arrogant or self perceived intellectually superior person that annoys me. In real life I might be a bit hasty and too-loosed tongued with them. lol!

    Thanks for this great blog and this post Jo Ann! Your a keeper!!

  3. Dear Scott - you are unfailingly kind and generous and I am so glad to know you.