Chelsea Jones and Eva Sealove – both from Los Angeles, have set up a mischievous Instagram account to mock the social network’s ban on sexual imagery. Continue reading “LA duo mock Instagram’s ban on sexual imagery with feisty account”
Being empathetic in a digital world can be challenging.
Never before have we been so connected to the world around us. Social media, 24/7 news reporting and the proliferation of portable technology means that we have access to whomever and wherever we choose at the touch of a button. While on the surface this should cultivate more empathy, it does in fact breed apathy and indifference. We’ve become so saturated with the despair, heartache and terror of others that it’s hard to empathise with their situations, no matter how grave or inhumane they may seem. I think it’s fair to say that we’ve all been guilty of glancing at a devastating photograph or hearing a dreadful news story, only to simply continue to go about our day. This lack of empathy or ‘compassion fatigue’ is not a new phenomenon but it’s certainly one that’s becoming more prevalent in our fast-paced, ever-connected society.
I am a 26-year-old editor working in London, one of the world’s most vibrant and exciting cities. Before this I lived in San Diego for two years following a career path I love. Born in Norwich, England, I went to a Mallory Towers-esque school for girls, before moving to Leeds for university. I have known for a very long time that I want to be a writer and unlike many of my peers I have not struggled with unemployment. After university I went traveling with two of my closest friends through South America and landed a job as a staff writer about a week or two after getting home. I worked my way through the company and last year was awarded a promotion and subsequent relocation to California. Did I mention that I have a wonderful boyfriend and a fantastic group of friends? It sounds pretty good doesn’t it, so why I am often so crippled by anxiety and self doubt?
The importance of appreciating life’s simple pleasures in a highly connected world.
We live in a highly connected, highly competitive world where we’ve been granted access to the lives of others like never before. You only have to read Instagram’s user statistics to realise that our obsession with social media has reached an all-time high. As of October last year the photo sharing app recorded 400 million active monthly users, who share in excess of 80 million images and ‘like’ more than 3.5 billion photos every day.
In 2016 our icons are chosen based on their social media mettle rather than on their talent or achievements, and our personal interactions are gradually being conducted online and within apps rather than in person or via the telephone. In short, we are increasingly living our lives through a digital medium, benchmarking ourselves against our ever-increasing group of online ‘friends’ as well as the rich and famous, whose lives suddenly seem attainable as well as desirable. We pit our everyday against the highlights of our peers and celebrities, and resultantly end up feeling as though we’re not quite making the grade.