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Joseph Bunny

Professor Jennifer Rodrick

English 115

6 October 2017

Dont Fall on your Sword

The internet is like alcohol in a way. If you want to be a loner, you can be more alone. If

you want to connect, it makes it easier to connect. The vast internet has been a tool and a weapon

throughout the years it has been around. It could make day to day living much easier, like when

your phone reminds you you have a doctors appointment at three the next day. On the other hand

technology can totally ruin your day, like when your car refuses to start and you need to drive to

school to take your final. Technology is a good servant but a bad master says American writer

Gretchen Rubin. Technology has consequences that can be positive or negative depending on

how we use it. Due to the choices people have already made, we have changes in the way we act

with other people. Technology has affected our identity negatively by changing the way we

interact face to face, commit crimes and even date because it removes the much of the emotional

connection that is experienced with social human interaction.

The internet has impacted the way we do things in real life. It has lead to weaker social

interactions because the internet has reduced the need to leave the home. Due to the internet,

people have been encouraged to stay at home because everything that needed to be done outside

the home are now accessible in the home. Things such as work, friendships, romantic relations,

and even banking. This is stopping us from having social interactions and weakening our real life

interactions.
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A study was conducted by theater teacher, J. Richardson, to see the impact of

smartphones on his classroom. After coming to a conclusion he stated, the freedom of choice

and control that students associate with their use of smartphonesshapes the way in which they

experience and respond to live theatre (Richardson, 2014). He also later states that the

smartphones even affect the way we watch theatre due to the temptation to check our phones

during a performance. He believes that smartphones have affected the way the students acted in

plays. I believe this is due to a separation from reality. It is easy to make some believe something

in an edited video with special effects and music production but that same impact from a video

must be done through a play. The play must encompass the emotion that you can't get from

looking at a TV screen. Another studied backed up Richardson's study when it was found that

Facebook users reported to have lower mean GPA averages and reported spending fewer hours

per week studying on average than Facebook nonusers. The internet is affecting even things like

school work. The internet is a huge distractor that sucks our time away from us. If we are

continuously distracted by something it will stop us from taking in reality. Our responsibilities

seem to just fade away, like they just don't exist. This affects our identity negatively because

when our minds detach from reality, we begin to act and think differently than we would if we

were completely aware of our real life surroundings.

Another impact that has changed the way we live is the increase of cyber crimes.

According to the Bureau of Justice, In 2005, among 7,818 businesses: 67% detected at least one

cybercrime, nearly 60% detected one or more types of cyber attack, 11% detected cyber theft,

24% detected other computer security incidents, most businesses did not report cyber attacks to

law enforcement authorities. The amount of businesses that have experienced cyber crimes is
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overwhelming. The internet has created new ways to steal and I am only lead to believe that that

has gone up since 2005 due to the increasing skill that hackers have. People you talk to willingly

share that they download music illegally and they download movies in the same manner. This

not only harms the industry they are stealing from but also removes the trust that the government

has with consumers. People's information have been leaked leading to identity theft. The internet

makes it easier to access thing like social security information and addresses which thus lowers

the security and privacy for the user. People have hacked into other countries data bases, stealing

information, making the internet a possible spark to a cyber war. For example, if the United

States hack Russia, instead of Russia fighting back with weapons, all they need to do is hack us

back. It will become a continues cycle of hacking each other till one surrenders. Now going back

to the statistics, it also shows that businesses arent reporting these crimes. Because cyber attacks

are not face to face, it removes the urgency that is caused by stealing in real life. During a cyber

attack, there isn't someone putting a gun to your head saying, put the money in the bag. It

happens very suddenly and may not even become apparent till inventory is done or someone

finds out the money is missing. Because of this lack of urgency, people don't report them to law

enforcement. We need to feel urgency to ensure our safety and our businesses safety. This affects

our identity negatively because it changes the way we feel attacks in real life. It lowers our

confidence online and lowers our trust with people. Meeting people online is scary for some

because who know who is going to take your money or your information.

Another thing that has been affected by the internet is romantic relationships and dating.

This is something that has been greatly changed because of the internet. Some statistics show

that, one-third of people who have used online dating have never actually gone on a date with
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someone they met on these sites. The use of dating sites have increased the amount of dates we

go on but have lowered the amount of successful dates that occur. Now that it is so easy to meet

people, we have lost the value of meeting someone new. Cheating also has gone up because it is

so easy to meet different people and fall in love. I am not against meeting new people but

when it affects the the value of meeting someone new, it takes away the trust we have with

others. We have to go into situations and act or present ourselves differently because we never

know when someone may come into your partner's life and remove the love between the two.

Another reason why online dating affects our identities is that people who use dating sites

only bring up the good things about them. For example, let's say a 24 year old girl can play the

piano really well, she will tend to put that on her page but she wont write that she didn't

graduate college. This could also bring out lying about yourself. I could go on a dating website

and say all the right things to get a date with someone else but lying about myself in the process.

This is why dates are so unsuccessful. People change who they really are for what they want to

be. Wanting to be a better person is great but when you lie to others and lie to yourself, thats

when it is harmful and should not be tolerated. Now going to the video that is under this

document. He talks about how apps like Tinder effect the self-esteem of men. When you know

some people are judging you quickly by appearance it's hard not to think that maybe you don't

look good enough and studies show that men experience this more than women. When someone

isn't getting a lot of matches it's obvious that people don't really like you so this does hurt.

Especially with men having a much higher suicide rate than women this is somewhat correlates

to their self esteem. Now that online dating is so prominent with people in this generation, it may
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be affecting the men in our generation and the more that men do online dating the suicide rate

may go up even more.

Now that we see how people change because of the internet we can see how it affect the

way they have to handle themselves. Since we are encouraged in today age to stay home we are

more independent to people but also more dependant to technology. Now that crimes are easier

to do because of detachment from reality it changes the way people have to trust each other or

maybe even how they see themselves. People have to also worry about the way they look when

meeting other people on dating website, hiding parts of their life they dont like and lowering

their self esteem. All in all, the internet is a wonderful tool until we use it against each other and

that is change who we are. Its negatively changing who we are as friends, spouses, parents and

most of all it is changing who we are to ourselves. Until we use technology to change ourselves

to be better people, we will continuously fall on our swords and use it for harm.
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Works Cited

Bureau of Justice Statistics. Cybercrime. Cybercrime, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 13 July

2017, www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?ty=tp&tid=41.

Do Dating Apps Ruin Men's Self-Esteem? Youtube, Seeker, 13 Sept. 2016,

www.youtube.com/watch?v=smc1TDoESYI.

Richardson, J. (2014). Powerful devices: How teens smartphones disrupt power in the theatre,

classroom, and beyond. Learning, Media and Technology, 39(3), 368-385.

doi:10.1080/17439884.2013.867867

Smith, Aaron, and Monica Anderson. 5 Facts about Online Dating. Pew Research Center, 29

Feb. 2016, www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/02/29/5-facts-about-online-dating/.