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Calvin Davis

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How will this generation of social media break the chains of smartphones and computers and return to classic social interaction?

Before 2005 and Facebook, social interaction was different. Dating was personal and there were few websites and social media outlets that aided in connecting human beings. In many ways this techonology is great in connecting those in different geographic locations, but now it is so excessive that it is beginning to degrade the in-person social IQ of many. Specifically the generation of 15-25 year olds. When this social media trend ends, how will these people reintegrate themselves back into settings where a high social IQ is needed?

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Closing Statement from Calvin Davis

It has always been self-evident that social media has improved the ways in which humans communicate. It is important to remember how to integrate this technology into classic human interaction, so that we do not allow this technology to be the reason in which we forget basic roots.

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  • Jan 8 2013: As a young man of 23, I take a special interest in generalized statements about people of my generation and how this or that technology is affecting us socially, mentally, etc. Although it might be true that there are some people out there who have grown up to be socially awkward, they are the gross minority.

    Gen Tech (my term, feel free to use) is a generation that has evolved in how we communicate. We still know how to communicate in person. We know how to make eye contact, how to use body language to indicate interest or disinterest, how to shake hands and how to comfort others; we also know how to communicate with and through technology. Ze Frank put it well in his talk Ze Frank's Web Playroom when he describes someone on the street scrolling through their phone when they get a Facebook message or a text message that makes them smile and laugh, or makes them sad. Ze Frank describes that as life being lived, just in a different environment.

    My generation lives in two realms that parallel and compliment each other. When we meet our friends and family and partners in person, we shake hands, hug, kiss and welcome each other with smiles. When we talk to someone on Facebook or in a text, we say Goodmorning! with a :)
    It is not a matter of our social IQ being degraded, it is a matter of the definition of social IQ needing to be redefined.
    • Jan 8 2013: Mitchell, I agree with you in many ways! It is nice to hear this side from a socially aware “Gen Tech” person. I totally agree that if used properly, the current social media network can bolster social IQ and redefine the way it is seen. Unfortunately, every Gen Tech person I run into is not as aware as you stated in your previous post as to the unforeseen positives and possibilities that are created by social media.

      The most entertaining person to observe are those Gen Tech persons who are loud, boisterous and confident when online; yet when you meet them they slouch, curl into a ball and are a totally different person. Yes, social media gives that power and it is good in certain cases. I just hope that Gen Tech remains strong and can blend their internet persona with their in-person persona and create the ultimate social IQ in human interaction.

      I do think this immediate flow of information we enjoy is great is many ways. Just like a man who carries a paper map to compliment his GPS, I hope that Gen Tech can remain in tune with being in-person social.
      For me, this train of thought came about when I realize that there are 100s of Apps and dating sites out there, all with have revolution the way we see the world; and at the same time taking away some classic methods of social interaction.

      I am interested to see Gen Tech embody that two realm social existence you spoke of. When effectively used in practice and execution, Gen Tech could be the best thing that ever happened. Conversely, it could also prove to be a hindrance.

      Interesting read in 1997: The Harvard Conference on The Internet and Society.

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