06 Jul

July 4th – A Family Event

Why do we feel the need to check-in and publish our every activity? Isn’t it enough to enjoy life’s experiences with the individuals at our side?

I spent July 4th weekend in New York City with some close friends. Between Central Park during the hot afternoon and a quiet dinner at one of the few open restaurants on the lower East side, the city seemed empty. However, as night fell and I made my way over to the West Side Highway, I was soon surrounded by the typical Times Square crowd.

Weaving in and out of the anxiously awaiting mass of tourists and locals, I was amazed to see most families more interested in capturing the firework display on their cameras or cell phones rather than enjoying the experience with each other.

I was always the designated photographer on family trips, and certainly appreciate the luxury that modern day technology allows, capturing memories and preserving special occasions with the click of a button. Yet, somewhere between 34th and 42nd street I realized how anti-social we have all really become.

Later in the evening I met up with a larger group of friends further south. Once seated, the majority took a photo, checked-in on Foursquare and made sure to publish their most recent movement on Twitter and Facebook. By the time everyone had successfully updated his or her respective social networks, we were on to the next location!

What ever happened to enjoying the moment? Sharing an experience with a close group of friends? Privacy?