Writing_140_A3_Revised - Corcoran 1 James Corcoran Paul...

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Corcoran James Corcoran Paul Blomeyer WRIT 140; Section 64320 11/5/10 Essay #3 Electronic Intimacy Cannot be Produced The debate regarding if technology actually betters society and people’s lives is ongoing. New technology is developed and released to the public everyday. Every year, it gets easier to stay in contact with people whom you meet in your life. Electronic communication has proven to be a valuable tool for maintaining pre-established personal relationships. However, staying up to date on the day-to-day events of people’s lives is quite different than increasing intimacy in relationships or generating intimate relationships. Although electronic communication can be used to maintain pre- established personal relationships, it can never be used exclusively to create an intimate relationship. Rather than creating intimacy, the obligation to keep up connections through electronic means, such as the Internet or texting, produces an addiction to technology that hinders developing intimacy. Since we have the ability to stay constantly connected through cell phones and computers, we are socially required to keep in touch with everybody in our life. If someone’s friend sends him a text message, he must respond back immediately. Otherwise, the friend will think that he either does not want to talk to him or that he is in trouble. One is also required to have a Facebook account and check it regularly. If one does not have a Facebook account, he is not socially “normal”. These social obligations are all very superficial. They do not increase intimacy because initimacy requires depth of conversation. These devices force us to keep up less intimate 1
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Corcoran relationships with a large amount of people rather than developing a small, close-knit group of friends. Again, this encourages superficiality rather than depth in relationshps. In fact, electronic communication promotes quantity of communication over quality, and superficiality over meaningful communication. Because quality conversation is required to develop intimacy, electronic media, such as Facebook, encourages superficiality and cannot develop intimacy. For example, ‘Facebook stalking’ occurs when an individual spends an excessive amount of time watching others’ Facebook accounts for information about others. This is an example of superficiality in technologically driven communication; it leads people to feel more connected to the people they stalk by learning about their lives on a purely external level. Since this connectedness is not shared, no relationship is formed between the two people.
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Writing_140_A3_Revised - Corcoran 1 James Corcoran Paul...

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