Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Is Technology Really Changing Our Identity?

| Wednesday, January 23, 2013 | |

A report released this week by the UK Government’s Chief Scientist has suggested what many of us have suspected for years – the way we operate and portray ourselves through social online platforms is redefining personal identity.While social media commentators in the past have varied from calling such channels a key staging post in the evolution of humanity to decrying them as the work of the devil, this new report raises a number of questions around how technology helps to shape our identity.

We explored how social technology is changing our lives, and what it means for us.

Are We All Celebrities?

Something that we regularly hear celebrities criticized for is that no-one knows who the ‘real’ person is. That is why there is horror across the media whenever a journalist hears a celebrity swearing, or dissing someone that they dislike. Sometimes they might even show their human side on Twitter, at which point all bets are off as we dive into a sea of ‘OMG they are so fake I’ll never watch their show again.’

However, that is what social media is doing to members of the public around the world on a daily basis. While some use their feeds for pictures of their children or their dinner, for others it is a platform for pontificating. Whether it is the latest release of crime figures, a celebrity death, or economic news, many of us head to social media to say ‘the right thing,’ even if it completely contradicts what we’ll say in the pub, later.

Social technology means that everyone, not just celebrities, now have a public and a private persona.

Where else is this apparent?

Online Dating

In many respects, online dating was the forerunner of what we term as modern social media. You put your profile up, post your best picture, and wait for people to contact you.While there have been many success stories from online dating, as relationship figures would suggest, there are also many instances of people thinking they were meeting Mr or Mrs Perfect, only to later realise that the reality didn’t quite match the carefully crafted description.

Changing the Face of Business

Social technology isn’t just changing personal lives, but is also reshaping the business landscape as we know it.Businesses are definitely an example of how social technology can be used to alter an identity in a positive manner, as they are now able to demonstrate a human voice in addition to what many will view as the ‘corporate image’ and reputation of a company.

Technology, and specifically social media, is changing the way we identify ourselves, businesses, and many other aspects of life. While these changes appear to be positive, they will need to be continued monitoring of trends in years to come. Social media will be rendered useless if it becomes humans’ only means of communication.
Author's Bio: Posterita is revolutionary new inventory management software that allows chain stores and single stores to manage every aspect of their operations via an easy-to-use web-based platform.
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