Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Literary Quote Month: Day 7

"The whole climate of thought will be different. In fact, there will be no thought, as we understand it now."
-George Orwell, 1984

Today in my library class we got to talking about augmenting technologies. That is to say, we were discussing technologies, in particular online communication technologies, that theoretically help us to be more efficient in our communications. The starting point for our discussion was MySpace; then we moved on to Facebook; then we reverted chronologically a bit to instant messaging platforms before reaching the online communication du jour: Twitter.

Twitter, in all honesty, creeps me out. Why on earth should I care what anyone has to say at all times? Why do I care what everyone else is thinking about? Don't I have enough going on in my own immediate space to keep me perfectly engaged with the world and occupied? Additionally, why would I want for other people to have access to my every thought and musing? I have plenty of privacy issues with Facebook as it is; I'd cancel my account if it wouldn't mean losing touch with people. So why would I want to fully put myself out there with something like Twitter?

I think, too, that the hyper-abbreviation that 140-character limits breeds will ultimately cause our thinking process to stagnate and then recede. If you can only express in 140 characters, eventually you're going to start thinking within those limits as well. Talk about thinking inside the box. To the worst extreme.

1 comment:

  1. I thought I might find your rant here. You make an interesting point about the 140-character limit imposed by Twitter. My peeve about Twitter and other similar forms of communication has always been the poor spelling and grammar that people employ. Someone should do a thesis on how that phenomenon has affected the overall writing skills of young people.