‘Twitter connects you with the world!’
‘Twitter can be the opening door to the job market!’
‘Twitter gives you a voice in the noisy world!’
This has been my rather biased Twitter information in my ALC203 unit concerning digital media. I was definitely persuaded by these arguments, but I was still not completely convinced. Even though the examples of people getting jobs through Twitter was fascinating, I had not myself experienced this connectedness. Until my fourth tweet.
I was tweeting a link to an article by the French philosopher Bernard Stiegler and his phenomenological critique of the non-philosophical connectedness within digital media. And without hashtagging to anything else than the unit, I got a like from someone I did not know. I clicked in to his profile and discovered that he was a filmmaker and a philosopher who had translated several of Stiegler’s works. I instantly felt connected to the world. It was not big, but it certainly opened my eyes. It only took me four tweets to be heard in the noisy digital world by someone of similar interests. The equality within digital media that I reflected upon in my last blog post was rapidly being materialised. How I as a university student could have something to say about technology and French philosophy that a philosopher would ‘like’. This new feeling of connectedness made me reflect upon the meaning of the word in this digital age.
Even though Twitter clearly connects you with the globalised world, the connection seems rather distanced. The short film ‘Connected’ by Luke Gilford also reflects upon the meaning of being connected in contemporary society. The film portrays a middle-aged woman feeling lonely and disconnected in the digital world. This leads her to a wellness retreat that is to enrich her mind and soul. Here, ironically she turns to technology to be connected with other people through a device with which she can interact with other people. This irony of technology being the problem and the solution to disconnectedness portrayed in the short film is very essential to how I interpret digital media. While digital media definitely connects people across boarders and class, in this connection, the physical intimacy of being connected to people and to the world seems to vanish.
While Twitter perfectly can fulfil a professional connectedness in the digital and globalised noisy world, I still doubt that it can fulfil a subject constituting connectedness to the world and the people in it.