Have you ever thought about how your life was 3 years back. I for one see a lot of difference. I used to call and talk to people on the phone as opposed to texting/emailing/tweeting and messaging over facebook, my life was much more private and I was happy like that, I used a phone as a PHONE, I used to meet people in person more often, spend more time with family and look outwards for entertainment (movies/shows etc).
In the past couple of yrs, that has all changed. Social networking has redefined our lives and most of us dont even realize it. Now I wake up and the first thing I do is check my iphone for facebook/twitter/orkut updates. I am perpetually connected – right from when I wake up to when I go to bed. Sometimes I am even woken up from sleep 🙂 I am even connected while I take the train to work, while I am at work, on my way back home, when I go to shop.. You get the idea. My life is much more open now. Everyone knows what I am upto and I know what everyone else is upto. I dont like talking on the phone anymore as I’d much rather message them on facebook/orkut, tweet them or email them. This way the conversation is much more controlled 🙂 I dont really like hanging out much (I was never a very social person, but now I am worse ), I am constantly entertained by my friends posts (whether it be some funny status message, pictures, videos, youtube links etc) and no longer find the need to watch tv or other things.
Social networking has redefined everything. It has helped some of us rekindle old friendships and build new friends, made us more aware (sometimes too aware) about the latest news and what everyone is upto, it has given some of us a platform to showcase our talent and get a wider audience, find jobs,find solutions to problems, share our happiness and sorrows with others, help and be helped. Overall I think its fair to say that it has improved our quality of life for the most part and keeps us engaged in an endless conversation.
Social networking is here to stay and the sooner we jump on the bandwagon, the better. However like everything else we need to learn to draw the limits. While being so involved in the virtual world, we should be careful not to forget the real world and the people that make us who we are. We should not forget the old fashioned gestures like calling and talking to people over the phone or meeting them in person. Let us all make the most of this phenomenon and try to strike a balance between reality and the virtual world 🙂