The Digi-Cult

A New Religion for a Digital Age

Perpetual Connectivity in Everyday Life: A Challenge

Posted by Rod Leland on September 18, 2008

Disclaimer: I’ve taken it upon myself to write in a slightly more sassy manner.  Half because I think it’s easier to get what im thinking out of my head if I don’t have to adhere/conform to academic standards, and half because I find academic writing boring. SO, if I curse or temporarily disregard common grammar conventions, it’s for the better in my mind. Disagree? Email me. Remember: Content is king. On we go, A think-piece for y’all.

The vast majority of us are connected online.  Many of us spend a whole lot of time online.  There are some individuals, however, that fall into the category of the ‘perpetually connected’.  I’m one of those people.  I get anxious and somewhat lost when I’m away from the cloud, unable to check my email, read my news via RSS (See image, right), or text my friends.  Come to think of it, I often get a bit jittery when things are quiet on twitter.

Connectivity in today’s age is more than just being online on the internet as well.  The type of lifestyle I live is of the never-turn-your-phone-off, paying-too-much-for-the-top-internet-tier, 3000-texts-a-month, 6-email-accounts, 800-unread-RSS-stories, first-to-know, last-out-of-bed, digging, twittering, flickring, deliciousing, gmailing, most-friends-on-facebook, variety.

Not everybody is this plugged in but to some extent we all have some perpetual connectivity in our lives.  Think about the last time you, reader, continued on a conversation that began online, in person.  You’ve done it. I know you have.  The bizarre part is that we don’t really think about that kind of interaction as odd or cool, it just is.  Our forms of communication are so many and so varied that for the most part, all of us have been forced into adapting to this type of lifestyle.

So I utter a challenge to all of you with two simple goals in mind:

1)    Seriously realize and take note of how connected you are
2)    Note, record, think about, or just process your interactions or conversations that cross mediums.

So my challenge stands.  If even once you find yourself saying ‘damn, he’s right.  We started talking about this on (facebook, twitter, texting, FB chat, email) and now continue on the conversation in person without thinking about it.’  Then my job is done.

The one big change I see as a result of the ability to be connected all the time and cross seamlessly between communication mediums is that the average, semi ,or even somewhat-connected group of people DON’T PLAN SHIT ANYMORE. No one knows what’s going on that night because it only takes a couple minutes to call/text/tweet/message everyone.  Imagine having to make all of your play-dates a week in advance like our parents did?  All I can say is I’m quite content being voluntarily tethered to the cloud.  Are you? Do you even know how tethered you are?

Think about it.

-Rod

Still Coming soon: Social Mesh Networking and Natural Disasters.

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3 Responses to “Perpetual Connectivity in Everyday Life: A Challenge”

  1. bananatree said

    The whole planning thing seems to get worse as your options grow. When you’re 2, there aren’t many things you can really do and have fun. When you’re 22 (and old as hell), there are too many things to do, and not enough time to do it.

    Now that I’m in Montreal, it seems like there is no way anyone can do anything unless we call 6 or 7 other people to make sure there aren’t any house parties around. If no, then we make sure there are no hot bands or DJs, then we just head to the closest/cheapest/hippest bar.

  2. Shannon O'Grady said

    I completely agree! I can’t get my friends to plan anything anymore, which is hilarious because it’s become so EASY to plan things and inform everyone. How is that when we all have 3 e-mails, a facebook, a cell phone, a home phone and a work phone that we manage to forget or fail to get in contact with someone? What the hell!

    As far as being over connected, or always connected, I’m quiet happy with my ability to stay in touch and in the know at all times and I don’t see this new level of connectivity as a bad thing. It’s wonderful to be at the epicenter of an event as it’s happening and to be riding the wave of information as it spreads.

    But I’m a freak like that.

  3. Cytoxan said

    I would like to see the inscription “to be continied”:-D

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