“We are all just prisoners here, of our own device.”
- Eagles, Hotel California.
I know this isn’t what the song was referring to, but it it fits the bill perfectly. The illustration above was done by Felipe Luchi for Go Outside Magazine and seeing it really struck a nerve.
Have we become prisoners of our gadgets?
If your morning jog involves running through a temple being chased by monster monkeys, or your pre-dinner routine involves taking pictures of the food in order to post on instagram, if the longest conversation you’ve had lately involved lol’s and emoticons, then maybe we are.
In a world so interconnected with all the social networks, why do I feel that we are more disconnected than ever. Back when catching up with someone involved physically talking rather than your usual Facebook poke, things seemed more personal. Our smart phones, tablets, PC’s and other gadgets were supposed to liberate us, instead we use them to confine us. Confined in our own little spaces, viewing life through these devices. Your best friend’s engagement, your baby’s first steps, the day Ateneo won their 5-peat, that first Lady Gaga concert you went to, all those memorable experiences, and we end up finding ourselves looking at them through the screens of our phones instead of appreciating what was in front of you with your own eyes. Paying lots of money to get those tickets and when they play your favorite song, you end up camcording it on your phone, eyes fixed on the screen instead of the real performance in front.
This often happens to me as well, going to a gathering, a party, or whatever, and instead of mingling with people I wind up seated somewhere, playing with my phone or tinkering with my tablet, making WordPress articles on how we should not let our gadgets sap us of our time and attention.. Oops..
I nonchalantly took this photo and shared it on instagram, tagged everyone and coined a caption pointing out everyone ignoring one another yet playing Candy Crush with each other. Then it hit home.
I am not suggesting we stop using social media, or the internet, or stop using our gadgets, that would be just plain dumb. We should instead be aware and take time out from our tech lust and enjoy life, real life. Our devices may have become prisons, but the prison doors are open, and we can choose not to be the inmates.