Communication has been changing much quicker in the past few years. Letters have been replaced with emails, phone calls replaced with texts, and Christmas cards and birthday cards replaced with Facebook wall posts.I know I’m not that old, 34 this year, but I remember Christmas as a kid and rushing to the mail box every day to see what cards had come during the month of December, now I check the box once week. It’s not that I have lost the excitement of the holiday, but that there are no cards to find, only junk mail from credit card companies. Most of my friends have already started their electronic holiday wishes. I get texts on the days, sometimes a Facebook message, and once and a while I actually get a phone call.
My friends are not alone in adopting this electronic world , I am just as plugged in as they are these days. When I wake up I check the time on my phone, then pick up my Ipad to check my email, news sites( it’s usually more comics and movies updates then local news), and then check Facebook. I read through to see what is going on in my world, and see it’s someone’s birthday. On a day like that I notice my Facebook newsfeed filled with birthday wishes for those friends.
There is an endless string of “Happy B-day”,”Hope you have a good day”, or “congratulations” under their names. Facebook even reminds me to send them a gift or birthday wish if I forget. We send these wishes now electronically and they don’t seem to have the same meaning as they used to. It would take effort to pick up the phone to call and have a conversation, or sit down and write out a card, put it in the envelope, stick on a stamp, and take it to the post office mail box to send it. The personal feeling is no longer there, neither is the effort. I could just as easily wish someone merry Christmas on Facebook, or a whole string of people by just typing the phrase once and copy and pasting the text on everyone’s wall. Or if I’m really feeling lazy, I just post the wishes on my own page and hope they all see it.
I can appreciate the connectivity of Facebook. It allows me to follow my friends from far away, keeping in touch with what is going on in their daily lives. But it is also taking away some of the sentiment that can be felt in sending a card.
I don’t know if I would have thought of this if I was not working at a museum these days, but it is something that is happening. What do you think will Christmas cards and birthday cards be replaced with Facebook posts and tweets?