I love social media, I really do. I spend hours every day on facebook. I write this blog, which I suspect 9 or 10 people around the world occasionally read, and I tweet at least once a day despite the fact I haven’t really figured out what the heck is the deal, and I’m pretty sure I’m not using it to maximum effectiveness.
My wife thinks I’m addicted and I probably am, so I can’t claim the moral high ground on this issue. Nonetheless, I am about to bitch.
On Tuesdays, I teach at a gymnasium, 4 classes back to back, students in the 1st year are 16-17, students in the last year are 19-20, roughly. For the most part, they are bright, interesting students. Some are lazy, and not particularly motivated to learn, but I was like that in High School, too.
The fact that I occasionally have to tell one of them to put their phone away is not surprising. The fact that I have to tell them again two minutes later is a little bit irritating. The fact that after I’ve confiscated a phone and lectured the student for 5 minutes on how unacceptable it is to be checking their messages (one girl today, after I told her to put her phone away and she pretended not to hear me so I yelled at her to put her phone away just looked at me in big eyed innocence and said “But there are puppies.”) during a lesson, when they might actually be learning something that is of critical importance to their lives and immediately applicable in the real world, and then the student sitting directly behind them is still looking at his phone, is downright mind boggling.
It is like an episode of Twilight Zone/Night Gallery/Tales From the Crypt (which were all the same show, btw, just with different theme music and, in TFTC, a different narrator) in which their minds have all been taken over by these devices, and they are no longer part of the real world.
Like in Rhinoceros, with Gene Wilder, or Invasion of the Body Snatchers.