The Internet Isn’t Making Us Sad Any More Than TV Is Making Us Fat
Saying that social sharing sites show the “best of the world” is like saying television only shows the Hollywood dream version of reality. The Web is like a realtime sample of humanity; it’s all the emotions at once. Joy. Rage. Empathy. A LOT of Schadenfreude. For years, Facebook’s killer feature was a complete accounting of all the people who didn’t like me in high school.
The Internet isn’t making us sad any more than television is making us fat, or cellphones are giving us short attentions spans. I’m wearing my heart on my sleeve here, but I believe it’s the most powerful force for innovation and creation in human history — a series of tubes that simultaneously made the world smaller and bigger than we ever thought possible, while giving us the ability to reach out without ever leaving our homes. The next round of dramatic innovations will be about making that power portable, ubiquitous, and sharing it with the next 2 billion people who’ve never experienced it.
Is the Internet making us sad? The only despair I feel is for those who might never realize that the Web is so much more than tweets and reblogs: that we can get under the hood ...