Abdullahi Sheikh / Silhouette Staff

There’s a severe disconnect between parents and their children over the use of the Internet, especially regarding social media. Years ago, families only really had one phone in the house, so it’s easy to see why modern families may find themselves struggling to cope with their children having separate phones.

Once you get Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and the rest into the mix it becomes understandably difficult for parents to know exactly what their children are being exposed to.

Although it may come as a shock to any adult readers, you were a child at one point and your parents did need some knowledge of what exactly you were getting involved in.

And today, with our plethora of wireless connected devices, it’s no small wonder parents are getting swamped. I’m not arguing for parents to have to learn how to use all these things; I am arguing for us as a society to realize what impact these technologies have on us as people and how we can work with that.

It may sound vague, but let’s delve into it a bit.

We’re always on the lookout for that new “killer app.” Why is that? Sure, all these applications enable us to reach more people than we ever could; now we can reach people across the globe in mere seconds.

But what we gain in breadth, do we lose in depth?

Isn’t something being lost in translation? When we see texting as an appropriate alternative to calling, or posting a Facebook status as the preferred way to send another a message, I feel we’re missing out on the benefits of dealing with one another face to face. I’m not going to wax apocalyptic on you – far be it for the Computer Science student to wail about the dangers of technology.

But I do think that a problem exists when people can get addicted to the Internet in lieu of meeting people face to face and when parents think they’re stupid because they can’t understand that new device their child has picked up and especially when, as was documented in the news recently, teenagers see a rape in progress, pick up their phones and upload to YouTube.

So, it’s up to you to answer. Are these devices helping us to come together, or are we just one Facebook status from falling apart?

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