The Internet Increases Social Isolation Essay

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Inside the majority of American households rest the unlimited territory of the internet. The unlimited and always advancing possibilities have unlocked powerful new tools in communication and socialization. Tools such as: long distance visual communication, international circulation of personal thoughts, and massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG) have all led to a closer but more distant community of people. The positive side can attribute to the fact that the younger generation seems more in tune with their international counterparts. Youth have the ability to anonymously communicate with others through various message boards, mostly governed by one policy, freedom of speech. The anonymity of the internet has created a community where social outcasts mingle freely with others; a society where jocks can converse with geeks without fear of reprisal. This community releases people from the bounds of their own flesh. Yet, technological advances have pushed society into the next dimension of communication and socialization that seemingly override traditional and more personal vessels of communication.
The internet, initially developed by researchers at MIT and UCLA, had first purposes as a communications system between participating Universities. Walt Howe, Director of Libraries at Babson College, explains that the use of the system was limited to engineers, scientists, and those with the complex knowledge of computer operating systems. Because of the complexity involved many attempted to create a more user efficient system, one that home users could adopt. The most modern and user friendly system was pioneered around 1991 at University of Minnesota as a tool to access files and information local...

... middle of paper ... socializing face-to-face. The technological shield inhibits proxemics and makes it impossible for those communicating to see the involuntary body movements of their counterpart, leaving a dislocated and artificial feeling. But, increases in online networking will lead to social skill atrophy. By increasing online networking, people will become left experiencing life vicariously.

Works Cited

Hall, Edward T. "A System for the Notion of Proxemic Behavior." American Anthropologist: 65. Web. 28 Oct. 2014.

Howe, Walt. "A Brief History of the Internet." Walt Howe's Home Page. Web. 24 Mar. 2015. .

Massik, Sonia and Solomon, Jack. “You-Topian Dreams: Myspace, Yourspace, and the Semiotics of Web 2.0.” 2014. 426-7.

Simpson, Joanne Cavanaugh. “Multitasking State of Mind.” 2006. Massik and Solomon. 469-71.

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