The food’s forgotten, but the lessons from the Shabbos table are for eternity. The subject of Facebook and social media came up yesterday at lunch. An argument ensued – does activity on social media count as real socializing? It sure feels good when you get likes, comments, shares, views and it seems like personal interaction.
Rebbetzin Smiles said that it misses out on real connection. Why? She quoted a wise sage from the last century (the Alter from Kelm) who said, “A teacher who does not know the color of his student’s eyes is not a real teacher.” There’s nothing like face to face interaction. She said yes, the social media interactions feel good – but it’s fleeting. The live face to face connections leave real, lasting, good feelings.
To take the point further, some of the Emory seniors pointed out that it’s become socially acceptable to have media personas which don’t reflect the real you. It’s too easy to build your perfect self in a fake world.
My New Year’s Resolution? (one of several small bite sized ones) Even as I learn the ropes of FB and its extended ‘family’ of media tools, I will increase my face to face, choosing connection with the people in front of me rather than the device in front of me. So good-bye until tomorrow morning, when I check in briefly for that fleeting good feeling when I see how many people read my ramblings. I choose now to spend time with the people around me.