As all you social butterflies know, today there is an abundance of socializing platforms where people can meet, connect and enhance their social experience. But are you really using the right platforms? Can you say that you know the person you are talking to behind the computer screen? In most cases, no.
The most popular form of social media today is, you guessed it, Facebook. Mark Zuckerberg undoubtedly did a great job with the website. One can see where the other person is from, their photos, bio, day-to-day status updates, create events, pages and see almost everything a person is doing in his or her life (I don’t mean to say it promotes stalking). As active socializers, we get lost in the fascination caused by this whole socializing fiasco. We overlook the fact that people behind the screen are probably putting their best out and not really being themselves. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to generalize the fact that everyone who socializes is not really himself or herself; I’m sure many are. But in many cases people’s personalities turn out to be completely different as compared to the personality they portray to have on facebook. A person being able to portray a specific persona is a big disadvantage of social sites like Facebook because they prevent face-to-face interaction. Even in the photos, people can pursue their social life to be really happening and outgoing where it actually might not be that way.
So, are their any social sites, platforms or apps that do promote face-to-face interaction? In my English class, I was recently introduced to two such applications invented by Lauren McCarthy. The first one is named Inneract and the second one is Crowdpilot. With inneract, people can actually have face-to-face interactions based on common interests with people around them. The video on the site show’s an old man sharing his meal with another person through the app. It includes other interactions like people just high-fiving each other on the road and even a person sharing his favorite song with someone. These meetings may seem really momentary but what if the two people who meet actually turn out to like each other and become friends? At least this won’t be a random friend request that you find in your notifications on Facebook. People will take their decisions about taking their relationship with a person further based on the actual ‘meeting’ they had with him or her.
Crowdpilot is an app that actually helps you not be socially awkward when having face-to-face interactions. Lets say you’re on a date with this girl that you really like but every time you meet her, you really can’t come up with anything to say. Crowdpilot allows you to get advice from others using that app or from your Facebook friends. McCarthy did some experiments with the app by herself. She went on blind dates with men and saw that the advice she got from people using the app was actually really helpful. People will tell you when you’re saying something that the other person may not really enjoy or like for example, you will get notifications telling you that “you are talking about your cat too much”, “ask him more about his life” or ”I think he likes you”.
In conclusion if eel that we should definitely socialize through Facebook, but at the same time apps like inneract and crowdpilot can boost our social experience to a whole new level. They allow us to actually get to see and know the person holding the phone or sitting behind the computer. They make your interactions meaningful. Also they eliminate the disadvantage of how Facebook prevents face-to-face interractons. Lets socialize the way it’s supposed to be done. Lets not hide behind the screen and lets actually meet.
Gayomali, Chris. “This App Lets You Crowdsource Dating Advice… While You’re On Dates.” Fast Company. N.p., 14 Feb. 2014. Web. 07 Dec. 2014. .