Last week, I read “The IRL Social Clubs” in the October 2nd edition of The New York Times.
The central focus of the article came as its author, Laura M. Holson, said “In an era where people flock to Facebook to find friends or communicate solely via text, a growing niche of entrepreneurs is building businesses that help people meet the old-fashioned way: in person. As digital connections have blossomed, so too has a sense of loneliness among some users.”
I remember when the Internet first came on the scene – the media hyped it up, predicting that the majority of us would be telecommuting, working from home and setting our own hours. But what about chats around the water cooler? Lunch with a coworker? And the idle chitchat at the copy machine?
Seems the internet, as useful as it is, can be isolating. According to “Researchers Link Use of Internet, Social Isolation” by Kenneth M. Dixon in Sanford News, “The world is more connected than ever before, (Professor Norman Nie) said, but people spend less time in person with those they care about. With regards to social interactions, he explained, quantity has replaced quality.”
That’s partially what prompted the creation of The IRL Social Club. Because while some don’t mind creating and living in an online world, others need face-to-face interaction.
One of the founders of the Spring Street Social Society, which hosts social events like the IRL Social Club, is Patrick Janelle. He has “about 276,000” Instagram followers, but he still craves human contact.
Plain and simple, while working online is great for those who need time alone, others are refreshed and renewed by time spent with other creatives.
Today’s post on Rubber Ducky Copywriter, “Five Ways to Keep Your Creative Well Topped Off” discusses what to do when writers hit a dry spell, and it also applies to what we’re talking about here. In Point #1, Erica Hayes says that “running dialogue over a cup of coffee has an energy that doesn’t translate through the internet.”
I’m somewhere in the middle. I need time alone to recharge, and appreciate quiet, but when my friend, Cassy, hosts her First Fridays, complete with art and music, it’s a great time to meet other like-minded people and enjoy some face-to-face interaction.
So…what’s the balance between having an online presence and satisfying any need you may have for social interaction??
Here are a few bloggers you need to meet – their blogs are funny, supportive, and downright enjoyable:
Jess Witkins over at The Happiness Project
Susie Lindau at Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride
Peter Mallett at Writing in Color
Barbara Techel at Joyful Paws
Tracy Sayre at The HeSo Project
Karen Tezen at Following His Path
Peg at Peg-o-Leg’s Ramblings