The Terribleness of Digitalism

I believe that without the constant streaming of live television, I am becoming increasingly bad at keeping up-to-date with breaking news. I found out about the Boston Bombings through Facebook, and I read about the horrifying story on Buzzfeed.

I know I can’t be the only one. When I come home from work, I check my emails, check Facebook and then I do whatever – read or watch something or blog, etc. I don’t read up on news events or what happened today, I don’t bother buying a newspaper or turning on the news on TV. I don’t feel a pull to do it. I don’t feel any sort of need to read the top stories in The Guardian or The Times, to research what I’m “missing out on.” If I had made the time and the extra effort to buy a newspaper, I would happily read it all, even the stupid dating section (thought maybe not sports). But when it comes to gaining news information from the internet, I become frustrated and often repulsed by what I find.

The internet is just filled with so much “band-wagon” and celebrity crap, it’s difficult to filter out the stuff I find interesting. I think that reading the news on the internet can be more engaging and informative than gaining news stories from TV, because you have the opportunity to read related stories and to read more about the story and to discuss with others about the story. But there’s also far too many people talking about other shit that is completely useless, that I often find I don’t want to delve into that world of the popular internet trends, and that most of the time, I feel distracted by it all, and very emotionless about it too.

There are so many wasted words on the internet, people just don’t seem bothered that there are tons of useless bits of information available, and that people lap it up like it’s actually teaching them something.

I sometimes read Buzzfeed features because they can be entertaining, but I’m getting sick of stuff like “10 celebrity tweets you missed today” and other garbage that I don’t care about.

It’s this incessant need to provide people, and want to be provided with constant entertainment all the time. People are not happy to have an update every week, oh no, we need it ALL THE TIME just in case someone misses out. Take the closure of Google Reader for example – one app that stores and displays news stories about practically every topic from a variety of sources for you to use. It’s simple and easy and convenient. Yet there are apps out there that need to shut down for the sake of sanity, but are popular, so they keep supplying people with shit they don’t need, but really, really want.

I just hate poor quality stuff. There’s a lot more out there for people to read and a lot more formats to read things from too, but that doesn’t increase the quality of stuff being produced, it actually lessens it. There might be a million plus books on a Kindle, but I guarantee about 70% of these are absolute shit. It’s not necessarily that we get more information digitally now, only that we can receive it at a faster rate.

And you can do anything online. You can create any website, sell practically anything, write anything, say anything, because the internet is just a big fucking fest pit of useless information. There are some people who should not be allowed to use the internet for spreading their ridiculously dull life all over the place.

Take YouTube as an example. I used to really like YouTube, before it got really popular and before the world and his wife could upload on there and get instant views. Now it’s just a domain for people to whine about their life and pretend to be an expert on something. It’s a site where people doing dumb shit can upload it for the rest of the world to share, or for people to make fake stuff, mixed video stuff and call it a decent view. It’s also a place where fat girls can sing a cover song terribly and get sympathizers who hate on those who think she’s terrible.

It disgusts me, these internet trends, like everything popular has disgusted me. It’s really repulsive to see girls crying over Justin Bieber, or people crapping themselves over Gangnam Style. It’s repulsive to see terrible things happen and for people to force their sympathy on others, like we should immediately care about those that suffer. It’s repulsive to me that people are not allowed to share their story, because others have it worse. It repulses me that people who have different views are not allowed to have a voice because there is someone out there who thinks you are wrong, and pulls you apart because they think they are better than you.

I am not grateful that we have more information, because despite this increase in information, it is usually very poor and misinformed. People read a story and misinterpret it, then coin it as their own view and pass it on. It’s the digital age of the Chinese Whisper, and it’s harmful to take any opinion or view as gospel.

People also love to troll. They love to disagree with something, to get angry about something, to say “you are wrong” just because they have a view.

But mostly, I dislike popular trends. I really dislike them. I dislike Instagram, not because everyone has it, but because anyone who has it thinks they’re proper professional photographers, or take pictures of food. I dislike Twitter, not because everyone uses it, but because I think it is a pointless invention and is also filled with tons of crap.

I think the reason for all this poor-quality, ill-informed information that spams the internet is that teenagers are allowed to use the web. I absolutely believe that this generation of teenagers are infecting the planet with their dumbness. Can you imagine a 15-year-old who’s posting stuff about Twilight every 2 seconds as Head of State? Can you imagine these teenagers who fight with everyone because they are so angry as police officers or teachers, or even worse – doctors?

Has there always been these teenagers in every generation? That the trends set out have been taken over by kids who like anything cool? Probably. But the difference is that they aren’t limiting it to their neighbourhood, or their city or their country, but they are spreading it around the world. I have enough trouble telling teenagers in my city to get out of the road and stop being a dick, never mind looking at stupid fucking videos or comments and realising that this teenager lives about 4,000 miles away.

Teenagers think they know so much, that they are right and that they know everything already. They think that everything that happens to them is such an experience, that they “love” unconditionally, that they “hate” so fiercely. It’s actually kind of sad. How are these type of teenagers ever going to deal with heartbreak and rejection and despair when they lose their minds over seeing a Justin Bieber concert?

I’m not trying to be hateful or preachy, and the last thing I want to do is make out like teenagers can’t have a voice, just that when the adults are talking, please shut the fuck up. If an older person has a view, take that as some sage advice, or at least that they may have a differing opinion, and not treat them like your enemy.

Sure, some teenagers might have been through a lot, but the majority of them wiping their pre-pubescent shit all over websites just don’t have a clue. They just don’t. Maybe it takes more than understanding, maybe it takes more than change, but damn it if the parents aren’t doing anything.

I shy myself away from this part of the world, and I don’t want anything to do with it. I don’t want to “Tweet,” I don’t want to “Insta-that” I don’t want to “Pin it.” I just want to read something with conviction and heart and to come away feeling mentally nourished.

Because information is oxygen, and we are starving ourselves from it.




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