Schettler: Living in a technological world

I’m a slave to technology. I’ve known it for a while, but I finally had to admit the problem last week.

I was getting ready to head into the Simp lab when I realized I didn’t have my cell phone. I spent the next 25 minutes searching my bedroom – desk drawers, dresser, closet, the kitchen, the living room, under the couch cushions.

I thought about just leaving it behind. I could handle a few hours without it. But then if people tried to contact me about the newspaper, I couldn’t get back to them. What if I needed to talk to someone about a story or a photo? Better to be a half hour late than not have my phone.

Really? When did I become so pathetically tied. When I don’t have my cell phone, I feel like I’m missing an arm. There’s something missing and I can almost feel the void.

The more I thought about it, I realized it goes way beyond my cell phone. If I added up the amount of time I spend online each month I’d be sick. But at this point, can it really be avoided? We’re getting to the point where it’s almost impractical to get news from a print newspaper.

Why would I wait a full day when I can go online and find out what’s happening right now?

Facebook and Twitter? They aren’t just fun ways to get in touch with friends anymore.

They’re news outlets, information sources and marketing tools.

Companies have started advertising their Facebook pages and Twitter accounts on their commercials and their product packaging.

I bet I check my e-mail at least 20 times a day, and after talking with other students, I know I’m not alone.

Even if I wanted to delete my Facebook account, I don’t think I could.I don’t just post things on my wall. I post things for the newspaper. At my internship, I’m creating a Facebook page for the business. Some professors have even started incorporating them into class – posting to Facebook discussions or using it as a tool to gather students studying in different places over the summer.

Is it really benefitting us as much as we might think?

Sure, I can often respond to e-mails within an hour or two of receiving them. I can deal with problems that arise for the newspaper or work with a simple text message.

But how do you ever unwind or decompress when you’re constantly wired in? Once in a while it’d be nice to just go MIA. I don’t want Four Square to know where I am all the time!

Perhaps I’m on not a slave at all but just a product of the millennial generation. After all, we’ve grown up with this stuff; I can’t really expect society to revert now.

And truthfully, I wouldn’t want it to.

I guess it’s time to adapt or go the way of the Atari, the Walkman or the disposable camera.