Does Social Media Create Agoraphobics?
Posted by Mitch Mitchell on Oct 22, 2011
As some of you know, my grandmother passed away in August. Before she went to the hospital in May, then subsequently to the nursing home, she lived with my mother for many years. Now that she’s gone my mother has pretty much adopted the mode of not really wanting to leave the house except when she absolutely needs something, or if I visit. Basically her life has devolved into a 10-mile radius.
The thing is that my life isn’t all that much different than my mother’s, but for a different reason. In the early part of the decade most of my income came from my traveling at least 4 hours or more from home on a very consistent basis. Now, most of my income is generated from being at home, with the occasional foray out of the area. And most of my life is within 10 miles of my home in every direction.
Social media basically says that you can communicate with people via the computer. You don’t have to go down to the club or to the bowling alley or the bar to meet people. Sure, if you want to have dinner or a drink with others you do, but truthfully you can eat and drink at home and talk to more people in 10 minutes than you would in an entire day if you left home.
For some people that also involves games of all types. How many thousands of games are there on Facebook? I hear that Google+ even has games now. And there are plenty of game sites where people can play against each other and have conversations as well; I do that on two separate chess sites.
Is social media creating agoraphobic people, or has it just enhanced what was already there for a lot of us? Sure, many people still have to go to work every day, but more people are spending time online in the evenings instead of watching TV. They’re talking with friends and family on Facebook or Twitter. More people are starting to stay home on the weekends as well. It was really big when online poker was still allowed in the U.S., and when it comes back (yeah, it’s coming back at some point) those people who haven’t known what to do with themselves will be right back at their computers playing for hours.
Have any of you started feeling like you want to be home more often because of social media? Will you own up to it if you have? lol