OUR VIEWS: Look away from the blinky lights

Jun 20, 2012


We can look into the womb to see our baby in 3-D. We can play Scrabble with friends a half-world away with the click of a touch screen. We can have a hip replaced with minimal down time.

All of these are cool developments and wins by any measure.

But in a hyper-digital and techy world, there are also some losses.

The concept of “out of reach” no longer exists. The bleep or ding of a computer or phone is omnipresent. One cannot escape cell phone calls, text messages, e-mails, Tweets and Facebook blasts. And if you try, the caller or messager would try again time after time with increasing urgency, now concerned that you haven’t responded within minutes to their inquiry.

You can also look up anything – from the length of a line at an amusement park to pictures and reviews of the place you’re considering visiting – in seconds from anywhere. What happened to surprises?

Your talking phone, with a polite inquiry, will even give you the weather down to the hour or the best spot to bury a body. Really, iPhone’s Siri does just that.

Wow. Talking phones. All very sci-fi from the '80s.

But with all of this technology comes a responsibility to use it wisely.

Everywhere we look, we see people choosing to pay more attention to their phones than their families. We see people ignoring one another to stare at a computer or television screen. We see folks losing themselves for hours in games that really, in the end, accomplish nothing.

Use technology, better the technology, but don’t lose yourself in the technology. Don’t lose your connection to loved ones, to your neighbors or to your friends.
Because that would be a true loss.

Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Cheryl Welch, Matt DeYoung, Kevin Collier and Liz Stuck. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to news@grandhaventribune.com or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.


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