There’s something wrong. I don’t know what but there’s something. It could be me, it could be everyone, it could be nobody.
I’ve had the opportunity to travel a lot. At least for someone my age I know I’ve hit the road quite often. So many realities, so much beauty in all the differences. Adapting today and packing tomorrow. If there’s one thing I’ve observed after so many journeys is the distancing that’s been created between the palpable and the real.
We all want to be, we all want to make. Something big is created today and undone tomorrow for something greater. What is real? Realities, cultures, movements, ideas. We are what is palpable. You and me. It’s not like we aren’t real. We are part of a whole. However, the real is created through the individual perception of each one of us. My real is different than yours. My real is created within my own reach.
It’s funny that as a whole, we’ve never been so connected. We’ve never had such a great “palpability.” Between you and me just a touch. It even seems like an illusion that one day we would have so many realities within our reach. Day after day, and more and more. Everybody trying to touch everybody, all at once, without anyone feeling anything. We’ve created arms but we’ve cut our hands.
Leaving the metaphorical talk aside, we can substitute touch by pokes, likes, tweets, and so on. I don’t believe the mistake is with technology itself. There are so many useful tools that really facilitate our lives. And in this sense, we are following a right path. The problem however, lies in the effect created by such connectivity: a false reality of approximation.
I remember that during my last trip to a region deprived of basic infrastructure and other social means, several people approached me, and without even trying to know me, they asked whether I was on Facebook. I was happy to know they had access to the Internet and were part of the digital world. Obviously, their access was very limited and difficult for the majority. But this is not the point. The point is for several it was more important to be connected than to know the reason for the connection. For me, putting the cart before the horse.
The Internet became a salvation, a needed reality, a touch for the untouchable. But while the technology grows, spreads and evolves, realities are being altered – and not always in the good sense. I see several fighting for digital inclusion but few talking about a conscious digital inclusion. What’s the use of a universal tool if few hands can truly operate it?
I’m not criticizing what we have. I’m criticizing the way we’ve been using it. We need to go beyond. We need to feel more, and touch less. While everybody touches, the mistakes remain impalpable. And I feel, and I believe others do as well, that there’s something wrong.