A Traveler and his Cat exploring America.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Stop and Ponder

I shamelessly lifted the following from another blog. I don't do Facebook, refuse to join the cult and see no real value in it. Maybe someone can educate me.

Facebook users:

If there was no Facebook, what would you be doing with your time?

What is it that Facebook gives you that real life is not?

Are your connections to Facebook friends more real than your physically present friends?

Where do all the things you put on Facebook end up?

Do you wonder how many servers it takes to house all the stuff on Facebook?

Do you consider how much electricity it takes to run those server arrays and storage devices?

Do you think the cost of that energy expense should be added to your personal carbon footprint?

What did you do with your time and your life before Facebook, Twitter, Blogspot and the trend of over sharing on the Internet?

sign me,

Not judging, Just wondering and guilty of having blogs too.
I'll take that last question a bit further in asking myself what I did with all that time before computers.
Among the blogs I follow, one is by a woman traveling around the country in her RV. She recently made a post about how she would get frustrated by a poor Internet signal. She would become agitated, increasingly uncomfortable and start to realize that her compulsive interaction with her phone and Internet was worsening her mood. She shut her laptop down, made a cup of tea, sat outside and enjoyed watching the sun set over the lake. She didn't turn her computer on for an entire week and thus, the followers of her blog, heard nothing from her for the same period of time.
I sat back and thought about what I had just read. I came to the conclusion that she was right. All the time I have been on the road, the only aggravating and frustrating moments I ever had was while trying to download e-mails, responding to those e-mails and making a post to my blog. When I was finished, which included several stop and go's at motels, coffee shops and any other likely prospects in attempting to find a strong Internet signal, I had blew off a couple of hours. Precious hours that could have been used enjoying the scenery or reading my book in camp.
I thought back to when I was a kid and then when I had my family, how pure and simple a family vacation was with no electronic devices except for a transistor radio that you brought along and never used for all that you could get on it was static.
Oh by the way, I just spent over an hour composing this post for my blog. Wonderful.


  1. There are a lot of pro and cons to the internet and "facebook". It does eat up time. However it does allow people to find old friends to connect with. See photos of their world, and discuss old photos that are funny. If a person could structure themselves to periods of time it would work. Or check in once a week.
    When I read your views on FB it was instantly in my mind wondering about blogs. Some people make thier living or part of their living with blogs. Or they want to share with others. It is a vicious circle my friend. People do have choices. If that includes taking a break for FB or blogs, then so be it. In truth I think you should try FB before coming to any life altering conculsions. Technology use to be simple and I too remember the transistor radio days. But we are all in this together. I will continue to read your blogs. You are a great writer and need to keep on plugging away. The alternative is head in the sand and being passed by the wayside.

  2. I got to know your wife quite well through FB. We posted photos and chatted back and forth wall to wall which keeps it between she and I. If it wasn't for FB, I wouldn't have made a new friend in Jane. I am thankful for FB.

  3. I recently reunited with a gal friend from high school. She found me on FB and contacted me. She came to visit last week. We spent an all nighter talking about the good ole days 34 years ago. It was a blast!

    Now I am going to LA area and will hook up with a childhood friend of mine who works as camera man for the Curb Your Enthusiasm show. It will be great fun to relive our childhood days. Funny thing is that this guy dated the gal I just saw from high school. I am sharing photos with each about the two get togethers.

    I don't spend too much time on FB. I have far too many other interests in life to be glued to this site but do find it to be useful in finding folks that you miss.

  4. Facebook is only as good as the connections you make on it. I get a lot of noise from people I knew decades ago (not good intimacy) and I learn details of my cousins', and now niece/nephew's lives they would never bother to share with me in a personal letter (good intimacy). Physically removed from my family, Facebook facilitates a sharing a tiny bit more intimate than a Christmas card, and much more frequently.

    That said, living partially online is a skill, and it's not one that everyone develops easily. I'm guilty of it too, and have taken breaks from both blogging and Facebook. Both have value, but learning to balance it all is the most valuable, and is an iterative process.

  5. FB can be a big distraction, but only if you let it. Someone else mentioned choices, and time limits. I employ both when ever I log onto any site that allows me to interact with others.

    As for the foot print it leaves. It is but a small part in the whole internet world that is out there 24/7. (I hate that expression)

    Given the choice. I'd rather be out experiencing life the simple way,that is why I don't spend a big part of my day writing online or checking e-mails and such.

  6. You are bringing up good points about Facebook, but Facebook isn’t the problem. It is the people that abuse it. Facebook can be just like alcohol, drugs or shopping....it can and will get you into trouble if you abuse it.
    I now make part of my living on Facebook, and continue to grow my business because of Facebook. I am thankful, but also aware that it can suck me into it and I won’t complete my day.

    It is all about balance.


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