Everyday I get an email from Dictionary.com with a “Word of the Day.” Seeing as how I’m an aspiring writer and I love to learn, I figured it would be great to learn a new word everyday.
One day last week, the word infomania was emailed for the Word of the Day. Here’s the definition:
infomania [in-fuh-mey-nee-uh, -foh-]
noun. 1. Digital Technology. a. an obsessive need to constantly check emails, social media websites, online news, etc.: The fear of being out of the loop, not in the know, fuels infomania, especially among teens.
Oh shoot!!, I think I have that condition…slightly.
I say slightly because I am proud of the fact that I did grow up in a time where technology didn’t run rampant. I grew up in a time where going outside to play was the thing to do and there weren’t over 3000 channels from your local cable provider to choose from. So I feel like I know how to balance between technology and real life. BUT I have to admit that I do have a tendency to exhibit the symptoms of infomania.
I think we all do.
And the more I thought about it, the more I became aware and a teensy bit ashamed (lol) of the fact that I do check my phone more than I should throughout the day. Now don’t get me wrong, there are definitely pros to social media, email and online news. Having the world at your fingertips can be a positive entity at times. Being able to get news at the drop of a hat instead of waiting until 5 or 6 pm when you get home from work. When you need a document or information quickly, it can get emailed or texted to you in less than a minute. Or even just seeing what your family and friends are up to when you don’t get a chance to call or text.
But what I think bothers me a bit, is the fact that we subconsciously do have that fear of not knowing or being out of the loop like the dictionary defines. We don’t want to admit it though. Would it be so bad if we didn’t know what was going on every 4 minutes? Would it be so bad to not worry about what our friends were eating on their lunch break or which celebrity was caught walking down the street? or is it going to hurt us to not hear the majority of the negativity that the news spits out every half hour to an hour?
I would much rather know what’s going on with my children, family and friends every 4 minutes. I would much rather worry about if my friends are making good, uplifting decisions in their life. I would much rather hear positivity in a world that only spews negativity. I would much rather make sure that the connections I made with the people I love and care about are still strong and firm.
You see social media, email and online news doesn’t compare to the face to face connections and/or interactions you made or will make with people. Not being in the know or out of the loop when it comes to your family and friends is the fear that I have.
So with that being said, getting all of our information easily and swiftly can be a good thing but letting it disrupt our lives even if it’s for 2-3 minutes at a time isn’t. I won’t sit here and act like I don’t suffer slightly from infomania. Like I said before we all do to an extent.
But would you much rather be connected constantly to your phone or constantly to the people in your life?