I made notes on our society in the UK:
We live in a society of social networking; with the likes of Twitter and Facebooks we can keep a live newsfeed on what the world around us is doing. Innovation in mobile technology has meant that this information is readily available from your fingertips on your iPhone.
I pass countless people on their phones between where I live and Sainsbury’s. In a sense, although we are so connected, I see friends walking down the street, oblivious to each other’s company and absorbed by their phone. It strikes me that we are becoming more isolated. I read online that a third of Europeans are suffering with mental illnesses. Although someone may have 500 friends on Facebook, do they have any one person to speak to about how they are feeling? I am not making a sweeping judgement that mobile phones and social networking is causing mental health illnesses, but this world of merchandising is having a profound affect on our society.
There have always been social pressures throughout my lifetime: in primary school, you were considered ‘cool’ if you had Bootleg shoes and traded Pokemon cards; at secondary school, there is a pressure to wear a bra to save from humiliation in changing rooms and so on. Although there has been peer pressure for many years, capitalism has fueled this idea of ‘having to fit in’. It begs the question of how shallow and weak our society is if we all have to own an iPod and Tweet every hour.
Although I have such views, of course I do have a Twitter and Facebook account and I own a Blackberry and iPod. Yet, I don’t believe this defines me and my place. Regardless, tomorrow 18th October I am setting myself the challenge of taking 10 pictures of our material world. They will be on digital.