Inquiry Proposal Draft 1

Area of Inquiry

The rise of technology has significantly progressed our society by allowing people the freedom to express their interests, disinterests, and passions. Along with this freedom comes the excessive desire to constantly be in the loop. Users of technology are constantly updating and uploading new material without thinking of the repercussions. More specifically, people who post pictures of hunger-struck children from undeveloped countries, or any type of tragedy. When these types of pictures or videos are uploaded, users “like” or “share” them thinking that it will help, when in reality it desensitizes us. Not only does it desensitize users, but oftentimes people will post these type of pictures to gain “likes” or “follows”. I think technology has advanced our society in more ways than measurable, but this millennium obsessed with their image on social media and the Internet are creating compassionless individuals.

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This particular topic interested me because I am heavily invested in helping other people. In a perfect world, “liking” a photo or video about a tragedy would bring support and monetary funds in order to help. But in reality, liking these images are minimizing the actual devastation that is occurring. For example, when I see a person post a picture, on Twitter specifically, of a starving child from an underdeveloped country, asking for a “retweet” I automatically become infuriated. How can one possibly think that “retweeting” a picture is going to help any form of help for this poor child? Sure, the picture raises awareness, but it does not stimulate action. If social media and technology continue to belittle the tragedies around the world, society will become numb to them.

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Direction (Vector) Of Inquiry

My main question of interest would be “Has social media desensitized us from the tragedies around the world?”. Within this question I will focus on social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. These three are the major feeding ground for users to connect, and they are where this issue mainly occurs. I will explore the depths in which actually “liking” and “sharing” has impacted the community. As far as the direction I am taking this, I will be assessing this question on a sociological basis. I want to explore how society has shifted its portrayal of tragedies around the world, and what will come of it in the future.

My Project In The Concept Space Of The Web

I envision an inquiry project with multiple images relating to tragedies and social media content. It is oftentimes easy to overpower an essay with images that do not relate, so I will attempt to eloquently combine informative information and images from all throughout the web. I hope my paper flows in an orderly fashion, and that people will be able to read and comprehend it. In order to answer my question in a thorough manner, I must include statistics, hyperlinks, and data from reliable online sources. This is vital to defeat any scrutiny that this question may be insignificant.  It is important for me for the reader to understand the harm that my question can cause, and hopefully inspire readers who could potentially be on social media sites to not add to it. If I can convince one person to not “share” or “like” these images and videos, perhaps their enlightenment can be influenced onto someone else.

Please let me know what you think about my topic and share any feedback! Thank you!

13 thoughts on “Inquiry Proposal Draft 1

  1. I think that this is an interesting and meaningful inquiry project, and I wonder how you think it relates to the phenomenon of “liking” posts of bad news and other events that no one would ever like in reality. your thoughts?

  2. This is a tough question to answer because with social media and television, we have the opportunity to look deeper into the tragedies in the world. But the bigger question would be why should we? Even though we would like to help every single starving child, we just can’t. And to be constantly reminded about their suffering and pain, would drive us into deep depression. I am not saying to ignore it completely, but to find a balance, were you realize we don’t live in a perfect world, but that we should be grateful of the life we have now. Social media, TV, the internet, all distract us from all the pain and suffering in the world, because by focusing on it, we will then inflect that pain onto ourselves. Sometimes distractions are okay, to a certain extent. Twitter and Facebook allows you to follow certain types of pages were it keeps you updated to the current news, so I still believe social media is a great think, if used correctly.

  3. I love this idea. The overwhelming amount of time spent on social media has been a really big problem and is very relevant in today’s times. I think it will open up a lot of people’s eye and grab their attention very quickly since it’s such a popular topic.

  4. I feel as if this IBP has the potential to truly raise some awareness on an issue many of us face. However, I would highly advise you try and remain even throughout the IBP, as even I would tend to favor those who view the practice of “liking a photo to save a life” as foolish. Perhaps bringing in the opinion of an individual who believes that the “liking a photo to save a life” trend could be right might be able to bring your IBP to the next level.

  5. Your post is truly amazing and that is so true we do not realize most of the times while liking the news and sometimes we just click like button without even going in details. Such things we do not do in real life but on social media. It is a popular topic and everyone will love reading this post and want to know about it more and more. Good work

  6. This inquiry puts the reader in touch with the emotional aspect of technology which is not something you hear much about unless it’s cyber bullying. It’s a refreshing topic.

  7. http://online.wsj.com/articles/furor-erupts-over-facebook-experiment-on-users-1404085840?tesla=y&mg=reno64-wsj&url=http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304120204579654822310749600.html

    I’m not sure if you’ve heard about this yet but my mind went to it immediately. Very interesting to see how the social media we are so attached to influences our mental state! That could definitely play into your discussion about how it effects community-and then from there our thoughts about the conditions of the world.

    Also how can we get people to take action? If those people who participate in that “like to support this dying kid with cancer” B.S. are actually sad about the conditions of the world. How can we change their ideas about how to make an impact?

  8. 1) Your Blog’s format is great! You have done a great job personalizing the space and using visual aids
    2) Social media has added a strange ego based desire for attention and the mentioned consistent need to be in the loop is total addiction! It seems as if we are already at the brink of technological dependence when I think just how much people WANT to be online.
    3) You capture the reader’s attention and mention some hard truth’s in your introduction. I agree with you and am personally guilty of “slackivism”. I’d like to think I am bringing awareness to bigger issues but you are not wrong about it desensitizing people.
    4) I personally find out about a lot of activism through social media and value many of these images that appear in my news feed due to “likes” and “shares”. The mass media doesn’t fully cover many topics that are going on in our world today.. especially those centered around more controversial topics.
    Many activist efforts are organized and supported through social media, this is helpful because most people don’t want to waste the energy to be concerned, while social media can help us connect to those who share similar, less popular ideas and (if you will) hidden truths. In my own experience of trying to make a difference, I know this to be true. I was labeled as a conspiracist by a former, less contemporary/ closed minded English professor when I wrote my papers in 2011 on topics such as genetically modified organisms, fluoride contamination and enlightenment. I wasn’t graded lightly but the affect I had on my peers was rewarding during presentations.
    5) Many of these images do contain links to help the curious acquire more knowledge on the topics.. aiding in the spread of ideas as well as an outlet for a higher level of involvement is so desired.
    6) In your opinion, what would be the best course of action for spreading ideas through social media without desensitizing? I am interested in reading my peer’s visions for the future and how we can improve within ourselves before merging with technology.

    Sorry if this comment is rambling but I always enjoy what you write and just hope to help you consider another side by offering some of my own experience. I look forward to reading as you further develop your paper; great job so far!

    • Thank you so much for your reply, sorry it took me so long to reply unfortunately I’m still figuring out this whole blog thing lol. I love that you enjoy my writing, and I hope this paper is the same way!

  9. I like your topic choice, you could also mention how people who try to guilt trip others into re-blogging, sharing, or re-tweeting things actually turns people away from their causes.

    With all the pictures and information from different charities that want our attention being shoved into our faces when we least expect or want it to be, our reactions tend to be pity and guilt which makes us want to get those facts/pictures out of our eye site as fast as possible or as you said, makes us desensitized to it.

  10. I honestly believe that your proposal has a lot of potential. In this generation nowadays, without social media there’s nothing however many don’t realize what social media is doing for us. Its eventually going to ruin us, yet it is good for certain things, however there are many negative side effects to it. There are so many approaches you can take for this evolving issues! Because it is an evolving issue I think it will a be a really interesting topic to continue to write about!

  11. Honestly I never thought about social media gradually desensitizing us, but in your post above you make a great point. To me, one objective of social media is to distribute information, which is why someone may post or retweet a picture of a starving dog. But millions of people being exposed to the picture everyday may come to see this picture of a starving dog normal and apart of every day life, I suppose. So arguing that these campaigns of activism on social media is hurtful, rather than useful will make for a great read! I cant wait!

  12. This is an awesome topic! and quite related to mine as i changed my topic from “if the internet/social media is making us less intelligent” to the motives behind Instagram Users and how Instagram has impacted our world. It would be great to exchange a few articles and to take a look at my proposal, right now I am still working on it because I just switched my topic Monday but my twitter is @sburlaaay and i’ll definitely keep you posted 🙂

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