I read an article a couple weeks ago about a woman who’d killed herself. But before she did it she posted her intention on a social media network. This was a sad reminder of something Belgian writer Paul Carvel said: “Internet: absolute communication, absolute isolation.”
This sad lady took an overdose of pills, as she said in her post. She also said she just wanted to say goodbye to her social media friends. Apparently not one of her roughly 1,500 online friends read her short note. Or they just ignored it.
With all the wonders of our modern technology, is it dehumanizing us? Does it lack the human touch?
Here’s Chief Joseph.
As John implied — and we agree — technology does dehumanize you in some ways. While it’s helped you create that global community you have talked about for years, it’s also separated you.
You can sit in front of your computers and virtually reach out and touch almost anyone anywhere in the world. There’s a vast amount of information literally at your fingertips.
We see nothing wrong with that. But what we do see — many of you see it too — is people often substitute technology for the human touch.
Let’s say it’s your birthday, and your family send you cards every year. Which would you prefer: a warm, handwritten card delivered to your physical mailbox or a rather impersonal email delivered to your computer?
That little example highlights this separation you’ve imposed upon yourselves.
The key is balance.
We’re not telling you to throw out your computers. We are telling you technology will never replace the sound of a human voice, the warmth of a hug, the physical nearness of a loved one. It won’t even replace a physical card in your physical mailbox.
No computer, no technology — no matter how advanced — can ever replace that human touch.
Do you think if that lady who killed herself (assuming this was even possible) had physically called or visited 1,500 of her friends (or even just 15 of them), and told them she’d just taken a lethal dose of drugs, they would have ignored her?
Enjoy your technology. But also enjoy your loved ones. Computers are replaceable. Your loved ones are not.