Monday, November 21, 2011
A Step Ahead of What?
Know what is really depressing about cell phone commercials like these? It's that they are becoming increasingly familiar and believable.
A few years ago, we couldn't really imagine seeing people walking around staring at their cell phones and muttering at the carbon-based life forms in the vicinity about what they happened to be looking at on their cell phones. A few years ago, we couldn't imagine snarking at other people because their phones were almost 3 percent slower at downloading information than ours. A few years ago (well, ok- maybe seven or eight years ago, now) we would have thought that the sight of two people eating lunch together but not looking at each other, and instead spending all their time and attention on their stupid f--ing phones was just plain silly, and totally unrealistic.
Not anymore. What we see in this ad is the New Normal- ditzy losers who simply cannot tear themselves away from their portable idiot boxes, constantly attempting to one-up each other in the field of "connectivity"- never mind that we won't see another population of less-connected losers until the next commercial for cell phones offering super-fast download speeds. Oddly, all this lightning-fast accessibility does is allow people to do what is basically Nothing, more Quickly. I have yet to see a cell phone ad which shows anyone's life being improved one iota by technology which allows for 24-hour availability and blink-of-an-eye downloading. In fact, all these commercials ever show me is how incredibly, mind-numbingly stupid and antisocial cell phones make people in tv land.
And in real life. Because like I said before, scenes like this are becoming more and more common every day. Not just in the exaggerated world of television, but in parks, libraries, restaurants, and everywhere else one has "connectivity." Which is just about everywhere now. Keeping us a step ahead- of actual conversations? Of exploring our own thoughts? Of taking a moment to enjoy the scenery? Someone, help me out here- why is this a good thing again?