Urban Dreamer

comfort sheets for sleepless minds and restless nights of a lost soul

Using the Internet to get OFF the Internet September 18, 2008

Filed under: Day Dreaming — clashabel @ 1:37 pm

What do you do when you arrive at the office at 8.30 AM in the morning?

You open your Microsoft Outlook and check your emails, you open your personal Yahoo and Hotmail accounts and reply some messages, you update your status in Facebook and edit your shout-out in Friendster then finally you turn on your Yahoo or MSN or both messengers. That takes approximately 15 minutes of your time in the office. Bear with me employeers… but Indonesian workers use an average 1-2 hour of their working hours everyday to go online.

With the recent Web 2.0 era, our generation are blessed with bandwidths, HSDPA, GPRS and 3Gs evolving their daily lives. Reading the latest briefing from TrendWatching, it is a basic/social need in today’s urban community to go online. See how our lives are so much easier by the benefits of information technology. When you need to know what “structured notes” mean in Indonesia, you translate it in Sederet. When you want to plan a holiday trip to Hong Kong, you browse for it in Wiki Travel. Then there’s the ultimate know-it-all search-engine which I thanked God that it’s been invented, Google! There’s a list of link bookmarks in my laptop which are essential to my daily lives, from mail, blogs, websites and search engines. There’s even more development to the browser itself, the classic Internet Explorer, the once famous Mozilla Firefox to the newest-claimed-to-be-the-fastest one, Google Chrome. All of them are develop by freakin’ genius brainiacs to help make our lives easier…

Bu does it really make your life better?

There are times in my recent discoveries of internet usage, I’d rather drown in Facebook than hanging out with a few buddies during the weekend. Just last week, instead of having a normal family dinner at the table, my siblings and I are eating dinner while watching video clips from YouTube. It is sad sometimes that I know where my friends are by their status updates from Facebook or my family member’s relationship status by the notification Facebook sent me. Even in my office, we are gifted a book of quotes on its 6th anniversary that dedicates a page telling us to :”Email Less, Talk More!”. How in today’s lives, it’s more comforting to express our feelings in a blog for the whole wide world to know rather than telling it to the person close to us. How it’s easier to IM our friends to know how they are rather than dropping a call or visit them in person. We are social beings and those social networks has certainly help us in contacting more people we know faster, broader and cheaper. Is it really social?

Social definitionattitudes, orientations or behaviours which take the interests, intentions or needs of other people into account (in contrast to anti-social behaviour).

I question that some people a.k.a Crackberries that have recently populated in Indonesia are often engage/married with their devices when really the people surround them longed for their attention. It’s funny that when people hang-out, they take pictures and desperately need to go home fast to upload the pictures and wait for it to be commented by the same people they have just met. Been there, done that!

How many friends do you have on your social network accounts? I have 568 friends in Friendster and 392 friends in Facebook. How many of those friends that you meet in person in a month? Less than twenty for me. How many real-time best friends do you have in your reality life? Both of my hands are enough to count mine.

Really, my point here is whether The World Is Flat or round, keep in mind that reality evolves around our own lives. Try getting OFF the internet and start paying attention to those around you. Start with your family, your friends and then your colleagues. It’s nice to just chat with your friends and drink coffee in a non-Free Wi-Fi cafe. It’s great to move your ass from your laptop and drop by saying hi to your work-mate’s desk. And it’s even more rewarding when you can give a hug or a pat in the back to family when you read that her relationship status is listed from “in a relationship” to “single” in Facebook. 😉 Start going to those events that people posted in the bulletin boards, arrange a reunion with your high-school or uni groups, kopi darat with people from your mailing lists. Take time to smell the flowers and see the sun!

There’s a great quote for this: To the world you maybe one person, but to one person you maybe the world. So will you go OFFline and start socializing now? 😛