Under the Microscope
by Glynn Wilson
Get ready, since I’m only going to say this once.
Due to circumstances that cannot be explained, I took the techno-leap of starting a Facebook page last night.
Judging by my dreams, which I cannot remember, I knew I would wake up regretting it. And that turned out to be the case.
As if life was not frantic enough, with enough Web sites to maintain already, not to mention dealing with blog spam and e-mail comments and everything else one has to do to keep life churning forward.
I had planned on catching Ron Sparks’ announcement for governor in downtown Birmingham today at noon, but instead, here I sit still trying to catch up on the news — and Facebook comments from my already growing list of “friends.”
I was going to head down to the Sheraton Hotel this afternoon to hear E.O. Wilson speak at the biology conference, but there’s also that paying job offer to complete this afternoon.
It is no wonder people embedded in the newspaper business hate blogs and Web sites. There’s no time for news gathering or investigative journalism or even the time and space for enough reflection to write an essay or a feature when the bad change is coming fast and the good change not fast enough and there’s not enough room at the top of my Web browser for enough tabs to view everything I need to see at one time to know what’s really going on in the world.
The thing about the news business is this: News organizations have always competed for peoples’ time. Surveys have shown for years that most working Americans only have like 30 minutes a day to read a newspaper. They may spend five hours watching TV, but only a portion of that is news.
This Facebook monster is just making matters worse. And we thought blogs were bad. I was going to go ahead and set up a Twitter page this weekend too, in a total cave-in to the techno-trend line.
But now I just want to get back out on the road and camp in the mountains off the grid again, like I had the opportunity to do a couple of weeks ago.
Or, I want to build something with my hands, like a fine bird house out of a smooth piece of cedar.
Oh, goddess, where hath time gone, and what will become of us?
Maybe E.O. Wilson would have an answer for that. The last time I talked to him, he bowed out of an invitation to speak at the University of Tennessee due to his “crushing” schedule. And that was in the year 2000, WAY before blogs or Facebook came along and ate more of our time.
How did it come to this? Is the human species just that gullible? Are we doomed to not only repeat our bad history, but to create and perpetuate all kinds of new failures?
If I come up with any answers for anything, you can bet it will be posted here in this Web space, not in Facebook, where a few anonymous computer programmer geeks make all the money. Fuck them!
© 2009 – 2016, Glynn Wilson. All rights reserved.