September 10, 2013 Duncan Alney

Has Social Media Made It Impossible To Live In The Moment?

How do we find a balance between the desire to share and the need to unplug?

A few weeks ago I found myself among a packed crowed at Yankee Stadium as Justin Timberlake and Jay Z light up the stage performing their hit song “Suite and Tie.”

However instead of relishing in the moment of seeing two of my favorite artists perform live for the first time, my attention was focused on my iPhone.

As I frantically prayed for my Vine video to upload, I realized that instead of enjoying the concert I’d waited so long to see, I was too busy trying to document it on social media.

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Is documenting the moment more interesting than the actual moment?

Sure, now I have the images and videos to help me relive this event. And sure, I got some validation through the likes and envious comments I received. But for me, this was not enough to dismiss my feelings of social media remorse.

Whether I’ve missed a home run checking in on Foursquare to a baseball game or gotten too caught up instagramming my food to actually take the first bite, more and more social media has seemed to take away from instead of adding to my real life experiences.

And unfortunately, this is not just something I myself am doing.

Much like when I gather with friends who end up turning their attention from our real life relationships to digital ones, last year the website Badoo found nearly 40% of Americans spend more time socializing online than in real life.

While in many ways social media has allowed us to share everything from the simplest to most sacred events of our lives with more people in real time, it has also taken away from the action of “living in the moment.”

Now the challenge we face, especially for those of us who work within this medium, is how to deal with social media seeping into every spectrum of our lives.

Because, whether for better or for worse, social media is here to stay. So now we must master the art of finding a balance between the desire to share and the need to unplug.

Kacy Capobres is a writer, reporter, and social media manager based in New York City.

Duncan Alney

Duncan Alney

CEO at Firebelly
Fun Fact: Duncan co-authored the book "Facebook Marketing Secrets." He founded Firebelly in 2001.
Duncan Alney

About the Author

Duncan Alney Fun Fact: Duncan co-authored the book "Facebook Marketing Secrets." He founded Firebelly in 2001.

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