What We Have Gained (and Lost) by Going Online

These days almost all of our needs can be fulfilled with just a few clicks online. Technological advances have pushed VHS tapes, phone books, and landlines out of the way. Nowadays, we rely on technology, specifically the Internet, on a daily basis. But have we also lost something by going online and moving our lives to the Internet? First, let’s check out the advantages.

Gone are the days when people had to pull out a phone book and look up personal and business numbers. Now all you have to do is Google something. And that’s it. You do not have to bother going to a restaurant to book a table – you can do it online. The same applies to personal communication – you can stay in touch with your favorite people by talking to them via social media and various apps. They can be thousands of miles away and it will feel like they are right next to you. No need to send them a letter that would take weeks to arrive, you can message them this instant and they will see it as long as they are online.

Many people still love to go to the cinema, but the difference is that nowadays you do not have to. You can stream or buy a movie online or simply subscribe to a platform that allows you to watch thousands of shows and movies for a low price.

Additionally, as long as you have internet access, you do not have to worry about getting lost in a foreign city. All you have to do is take out your phone and turn on, e.g., Google Maps. You will get everything you need – directions, tips and the approximate duration it will take you to reach your destination. 

If you are an avid reader, then you are probably aware of the fact that newspapers, books, and even whole libraries can now be browsed online. You can purchase an e-edition of your local newspaper, download thousands of books to your tablet and borrow books from libraries without setting a foot outside. The main advantage is a wide range of titles and availability to everyone.

As you can guess, since books can be read online, that also means that teachers and schools have moved to the online domain too.

Now you can attend classes via conference calls, purchase courses, and learn new languages. Your teacher or trainer can be a person who lives on a different continent and they would still be able to transfer their knowledge to you, as long as they are qualified to do so and you are motivated to learn, of course. You can also further enhance your language and communication skills online by working with a language coach from the comfort of your home.

To be perfectly honest, it’s not all that glorious to lead a highly digitalized life. There is an elusive tipping point of using technology and doing things online. If you go past that tipping point, YOU become a servant to your own devices and routines. The feeling of convenience becomes replaced by the anxiety of doing some things the “old way.” 

As technology becomes more and more advanced, we quickly forget how things used to be 1 year ago regardless of which year you take as an example – the rate of change is shockingly fast now. Amazingly, the Internet gives us the luxury of getting almost anything we want with a few clicks and nothing more. Still, it is also important not to take that lifestyle for granted but try to make the best of it.

I believe one of the most accurate ways to describe this period is to use the word unique.

These challenges are something we most certainly didn’t have before and, hopefully, will not have again. As it is unique, please, please don’t miss the opportunity to do or create something worthwhile with the time we have on our hands now. This kind of opportunity really does come once in a lifetime.

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