Monday, January 14, 2008

Pro's and Con's of today's technology

I love the Internet. Confession - I spend WAAAY too much time on the Internet.
I read a lot of blogs and writing-related websites. Some of these are for fun, but some are actually teaching and helping me
improve my craft. So I figure they don't count so much as wasted time.
If it weren't for the Internet, I can tell you I wouldn't be where I am with my writing today. It still astounds me how much
is available, and I'm so blessed to have found some wonderful friends and authors in the writing world that I connect with
on a daily basis. That's all good.

Email - yes, another of my great loves. I love the sound of that little bing telling me I've got mail. I really enjoy the fact that if I want to touch base with somebody, all I have to do is fire off a quick email and I know they'll get it, and either respond right away or within a few hours, depending on the person. Some of my friends are not so good with this. In my opinion, if you have email, and you really want to keep in touch, you have no excuse.
What I don't like is the uncertainty that sometimes happens when you send something off and don't get a reply. Did it get there? Are they just ignoring me? Should I write to see if they got it and they're ignoring me? Ah, the joys of mind games.
It's also really easy to misinterpret something written in an email. I've learned to always rely on my instincts when I read something, and if I'm really not sure what the person meant, I'll write back and ask them. Sadly, I had to learn this the hard way.

But all in all, I say we are greatly blessed to have all this technology at our fingertips. I love the fact that if I need to do some research for a book idea, all it takes is a few clicks and I have more than enough information to get started.
I love that I can chat with my daughter in Canada whenever she's available, through MSN or Skype. We still feel connected even though she's far away. I do the same with my sister, and friends across the globe. For an introvert, the Internet is a miracle! You can still be social, you just don't have to do it in person. Okay, shoot me. I know that sounds sad. But hey, it's working for me. Of course if you ever do show up on my doorstep, I won't slam the door on you.

As in all things in this world, there are pro's and con's. There is a lot of really nasty stuff on the Internet. There are ways to protect yourself from it, and I would suggest you do so, especially if you have children. There's also a lot of really cool stuff out there too, enlightening, enriching and educational. But, a word of caution, everything in moderation. Hours can fly by without you even knowing. The Internet CAN be a great time waster. It can also be a valuable tool. It's your choice how you use it.
That said, I'm off to write.
Viva La Internet!


Michelle Gregory said...

I'm there with you, using it for my advantage and wasting time. I wouldn't have started writing without the internet, but it sometimes keeps me from writing - another way to procrastinate (like I'm doing right now).

Robin Johns Grant said...

I fully agree with you--especially the part about how great it is for an introvert. It's amazing how bold I will be on line. I'll write people I don't know and ask them questions and send them writing samples. Send me to a conference where I have to do that stuff face to face and I'm a mess!

Jo said...

A hearty amen! There's worlds to explore on the internet, but three hours can go by and you won't know it. As an introvert, I'm right there with you!