Facebook & the primacy of human touch

I have been THINKING!!

Thinking about all that is going on around us. I am not talking about the rape case, the murder case and other gruesome crimes we have witnessed recently. I am talking about how we as a society are rapidly becoming oblivious to our surroundings.

I very strongly believe that the advent of social media (and other technology making communication”easy”) has taken us away from everything else.  We are living in times when people can have fully wholesome lives and hundreds and hundreds of Facebook friends (or chat friends or Twitter followers) without actually having a single “friend”. I want to use this article to request all of us to stop and think for a moment. The true loss is HUMAN TOUCH. All scientific research has shown the importance of human touch, but I think its not a subject for scientific research anymore. We are not talking about how lack of touch impacts an orphan. We are talking about how lack of touch impacts the basic foundation of our society. Obesity, diabetes, heart ailments, all appear smaller when compared to this issue.

But, what’s the problem with that?

  • Firstly, we don’t experience any human touch. This means we have no experience of human pain except for when it’s ours. This fundamentally alters how we operate in a society. I bet we won’t find it so easy to break somebody’s head if we understood this pain.
  • Secondly, the communication is all framed. Face-to-face communication has the innocence and spontaneity of being true. I would have been fine if it was just this. The problem aggravates because we all have become more deceitful and manipulative as a result.
  • Thirdly, as all research shows, physical contact helps flow the chemicals to bind people together. Marriage is a perfect example of how physical contact binds people together.
  • Last but not the least, we have all started becoming loners in a crowd.  We are skeptical of everyone around us and keep on looking for what else.

Growing up, “older” people kept talking about why kids shouldn’t play violence based video games… why we shouldn’t watch very violent movies and try to do everything to protect us. Growing up, I always wondered why? We still used to play with our friends, we still used to tease each other, we still felt the impact of human touch. We still knew what it is like to grow socially. But now, we are losing that basic essence of living.

So, where are we? Well, the first approach to solution is to identify the problem. Lets talk, discuss, share and put our heads together to resolve what I perceive is one of the toughest battles we would need to fight. I will love to hear your feedback, and continue this discussion.

If you want to write to me personally, please write to kapil.gupta@omlogic.com

PS: Before the social media police gets to me (with a name like Kapil, it is always a danger), let me put a disclaimer. I am the CEO of a social media agency (www.omlogic.com) and my livelihood depends on people spending more and more time on Facebook. The views put here are mine as a human and only as a human. 🙂

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3 thoughts on “Facebook & the primacy of human touch”

  1. Good way of putting it sir. Dont you think, touch based phones and video sharing features are an extension of our need to touch, see and feel things? Good article.

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