Once upon a time, in a land not so far away, there was no such thing as Facebook. Times were simpler and stories more true. Keeping up with the Jones’ was a simple contest regarding who had the best lawn or the newest car on the block. Laundry was hung privately in our own backyards and experiences were real and meaningful. We didn’t have the technology or the need to share every detail of our lives with a faceless population of acquaintances and false friends. It was a simpler more transparent and integral time.
A liar is a liar and a fraud is a fraud no matter how the sugar coating and deceptions might be applied. We can create our own world and our own reality through the power of social media and all the truths it omits. Perception has become the new reality and assumptions are now the benchmark for which we base our decisions. We take actions that change our paths and purpose based on someone’s very creative and non dimensional creation splashed across our computer screens. We are choosing friends and destroying relationships solely based on posts and comments that have no base and can be construed by fifty different people in fifty different ways. Truth is lost on the Facebook. Through screen shots and shared posts of strangers we find ourselves integrated into places we do not belong. We are losing the ability to not be involved in what does not involve us.
I am as guilty as the next person. I remember signing up for “The Facebook” because my daughter was away doing her internship with Disney and I wanted to stay in touch – see her face – be able to share our lives even though we were thousands of miles apart. It started out innocently enough. But the power of FAKEBOOK gets into our heads and our bloodstream. It allows us to promote ourselves, our causes, our worries – it leads us down a road of false certainty that the world might actually know us through our appearance on social media and through those almighty “likes” – they might actually accept and understand us as well. It becomes a drug – we self market and lose ourselves in the dangerous make believe world we alone have created.
Having dinner with dear friends is no longer an interaction consisting of conversation and shared plates but it somehow becomes an opportunity to extend our intimate experience with a world of strangers. When did we become so determined to interrupt the rhythm of life and friendships by over sharing the common occurrences of every day living? When did it become impossible to interact with family and friends without looking at our phones every 10 minutes? It truly is a destructive human phenomenon which has no boundaries – like a corrosive epidemic that seeps into the very foundation of our social morality. And when “friends” feel left out or bothered by your pictures and posts and take action – internal or external – this shifts the whole concept of normalcy in human relationships. The town gossip has retired because the damaging and distant reactions people take in response to words on a screen become a toxic mist with no end and no beginning. Feelings are real – Facebook is not. The contradiction fascinates and sickens me all at the same time.
We are so good at lying to ourselves. The manipulative continue to manipulate and the weak hold perception as truth without daring to dig a little deeper. The dangers of social media run rampant in our everyday lives and we alone are responsible for the damages it can cause. The addiction to the applause of the audience – no matter how strange and demented they may be – is one we need to overcome. Our lives need to be good enough – our personal encounters and experiences real enough to outweigh the passive aggressive and often unpredictable behaviors FAKEBOOK allows into our homes.
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About K. Guzman
Kathy grew up all over the US - lots of east coast time. She is a surfer girl with an unabridged curiosity. A woman whose mid life awakening continues to bring her to the place she was meant to be. Her degree in Journalism/Creative Writing from the University of Central Florida is being yanked from the archives and put to good use. Her two kids are grown and rock stars in this wild world – her Harley is ready for some serious summer miles – and her heart remains open to life, women and the possibilities each day brings.