Friday, August 20, 2010

When older people rant against Facebook they make themselves look out of touch

I do encounter people over 40 who proudly declare that they would never go on Facebook. Yesterday I spoke at length with someone who pronounced Facebook as dangerous and responsible for the breakdown of relationships, corruption of innocents and many, many scams. Most young people and knowledgeable older ones, simply laugh at this and see it as proof that the individual is completely out of touch. I have often wondered how anyone can be proud of being behind the times. The reality is that change will happen, that technology is actually neutral, but that people decide how it is used. To argue against change is like King Canute trying to hold back the waves - doomed to failure and a sign of ignorant arrogance.

1 comment:

paleoman said...

"I do encounter people over 40 who proudly declare that they would never go on Facebook. Yesterday I spoke at length with someone who pronounced Facebook as dangerous and responsible for the breakdown of relationships, corruption of innocents and many, many scams. Most young people and knowledgeable older ones, simply laugh at this and see it as proof that the individual is completely out of touch. I have often wondered how anyone can be proud of being behind the times."

I have nothing against Facebook really, I just choose not to participate. I do not believe it is dangerous or subversive. Your last statement is an unfortunate one that paints everyone who does not have Facebook as woefully "behind the times" Can you please enlighten me as to the benefits of having Facebook that I do not already enjoy with my email and Blackberry. I would say those that laugh at someone just for not having Facebook are in dire need of a check-up from the neck up.


"The reality is that change will happen, that technology is actually neutral, but that people decide how it is used."

I agree with you here. As an anthropologist, how we manage change is important. Technology is neutral. Unfortunately, change - all change, but change associated with technology is not necessarily teleological. It is simply random, stochastic change that does not necessarily have positive results.

"To argue against change is like King Canute trying to hold back the waves - doomed to failure and a sign of ignorant arrogance."

A sign of ignorant arrogance. This statement is what prompted me from amusement to concern. So, by your criterion, anyone who does not have Facebook is arguing against change and is there fore guilty of "ignorant arrogance". I am sure you are also lead to purchase the latest of every consumer item, believe all that the advertisers promise. I would say you have just crossed over into the exact realm you decry - that of ignorant arrogance.