Over a year later…

There have been many times in the past year when I have wanted to update this blog, but lack of time and exhaustion of the topic stopped me.  I knew that it would take me months to fully understand what happened to me and it has.  For many weeks after, I didn’t even want to talk about the project because I was so overwhelmed with it all.

As time goes by, I still notice the physical and emotional impacts the project has had on me.  My ability to effectively multi-task has lessened or I seem to have less of a tolerance for it.  I feel as though I am overwhelmed more easily by emails, text messages, and social media or at least I am more aware of its affect on me now.

In response to this, I don’t use facebook much anymore.  I will occasionally post images and I will sometime “like” something, but it’s difficult for me to really engage in it.  I have only logged on to Twitter a few times.  I opened a Foursquare account as part of another art project, but I’ve abandoned it now that the project is over.

Since starting grad school a few months ago, I have had little time to socialize on or offline.  For some, this may be a perfect example of when facebook helps you maintain your friendships with little investment of time.  However, it doesn’t work that way for me.  Instead, I try to squeeze in face-to-face interactions.  Although, they may be few and far between, it seems to be a better use of my time.

From my conversations with others, it doesn’t seem like I am missing that much on facebook these days anyway.   Many have told me that they think facebook is changing.   A common comment is, “It’s not as interesting as it used to be.”  There seems to be a shift from personal use to networking or more business-based use.  I keep wondering if the the novelty is starting wearing off.  However, these people I speak of still have their facebook accounts and so do I.  As much as I try not to participate, I still can’t seem to cut ties.  I feel that it is a social norm and I must have an account to be a part of society.  Plus there are still some nice conveniences.  Apparently, the positive benefits still out weigh the negative.

Here’s a quick update on the documentary.   Josh started working on it, but has yet to complete it.  The pressures of everyday life have gotten in the way.  We apologize to those who had hoped to see a final product by now. Especially to those who graciously volunteered to help with the shooting and many others who were filmed.  Your time and involvement in the project continues to be greatly appreciated.

2 Responses to “Over a year later…”

  1. Patrick F. Says:

    I followed your project heavily while it was ongoing, then dropped off when I found myself swamped by college work. Now, one of my last papers in my senior year gave me the ability to write about your project, and I return to your blog and see this post. For one, I was a little worried that this Project has gone to the wayside but I am glad to see the documentary is still being worked on. I will definitely check that out when it is released.

    Part of me is a little disappointed by the amount of coverage your Project has received because I feel that personally, as a 21 year old college student, the questions and concerns you tried to address with these two art pieces are so integral to our lives and to the future of social networking that more people definitely need to know about it. I’ve told many of my friends about this Project, and it’s a little ironic that the majority of the time they are fiddling with their smartphones while I share with them the details of your isolation.

    I suppose the real emotion I’m feeling is worry – I’m worried that my generation has already given up on the idea that we can communicate without digital means. I’m worried that we already are becoming too dependent on these technologies that things such as face-to-face conversing are going “out of style.” But how else are we supposed to connect with one another in our fast-paced world of instant gratification?

    I’m not even sure if you will ever read this comment, but in the off chance that you do, thank you to yourself and Josh for doing this. It’s something I know many of us had in the backs of our minds, but sometimes it just takes someone in a glass room for us to realize that now, more than ever, our lives are on display for everyone to see.

    With much appreciation and gratitude from Tennessee,

  2. Cristin Says:

    Thank you for your post. I appreciate you coming back to check–in on the project. I, like you, have recently been swamped with college projects. That is the reason for my delayed response.

    I worry about many of the same things you do. That’s why I continue to make work in grad school about this topic. I struggle with it though. At times, I wonder if it is still a relevant concern because many people question these technologies less and less. However, hearing comments like yours restores my commitment to the importance of the issue. So, thank you Patrick from Tennessee.


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Cristin Norine and Joshua Jay Elliott