CFN – Friday was an interesting day. I watched the movie Her and Facebook went wonky on me. Recently to celebrate our 5th Anniversary of CFN I screened the classic movie Blade Runner at our lovely old Port Theatre here in Cornwall.
In Blade Runner the replicants are embedded with memories and have a longing for the photos of those false memory that they possess. That element has always fascinated me.
In the movie Her, Spike Jonze creates this atmosphere and world where the lead character played by Joaquin Phoenix becomes involved with an operating system. A digitally created persona, Samantha, voiced by the ciggy and musky throated Scarlett Johansson, that he not only falls in love with, but reciprocates. I don’t want to give away too much of the plot line as the movie is a must see.
His character clearly has relationship issues as they introduce him breaking up with his human girlfriend. My fave, the cute, and talented Amy Adams, plays the equally unable to relate friend. Amy was really geeked down in this role; from the way she speaks to the way she looks. It was amazing that she even took this role as there wasn’t much for the talented actress to do.
This same day that I watched this movie Facebook sent me an email telling me that I had made an error in how my account of nearly five years and 3,000 or so friends was set up.
Instead of being Jamie Gilcig (Cornwall Free News) I had it vice versa. The result was not a note asking me to change that; but to switch me over to some sort of corporate account or one that you get when you’re over 5,000 facebook friends. The only thing is that I’ve lost all my photos, face book chat scripts, interviews, friends, and groups I’ve started or belong to.
Someone found a way to send a message;
..I kept looking for your page and it would not load…Whenever I go for the news first I look at your page and it was not there.Hope you and your fur friends are well…Hope it gets fixed soon I want the news fast..Thank You for responding and keep up the good work..
I’ve had people freaking out and angry saying I’ve blocked them. I’ve had panicked emails. I even have a little hater group gloating that they had me booted from Facebook even though I’m still there. I’ve just been joggled around.
Now Facebook has millions and millions of users. I get that, and I get that it must be a monumental task to herd that many human cattle live and liquid. I have a hunch Facebook will resolve this at some point in the near future. There’s no issue here.
But there’s this strange feeling as though I’ve been unplugged? I’m used to sending out a message into my circle of 3,000 and getting back feedback, or for example seeing how my friend Elisa is doing at her new gig and life in Victoria BC after moving from Ottawa. I’m used to seeing my time line roll by and see what so many people are posting about.
This week after my Ryan Gosling anti-bullying story a mom reached out to me for help regarding her son being bullied on a school bus. I was happy to take two hours of my day to help her. Her one comment was that she finally found someone to listen to her; which in the end is what we all want in our lives; someone to listen. This isn’t unique as there are many issues I help with or listen to that never end up as news stories. Now those people feel that they are cut off.
Withdrawal can be a good or bad thing. I still have twitter. After this experience I think it’s taught me to not use or rely on one service as much as I did with Facebook. New Social media sites are rising up, and I’ve ignored them because I’m comfortable on Facebook and it felt like home. Things can always be improved and looking at what I’ve gone through it looks like an area that Facebook can improve on. And for a site that is all about communication it’s almost impossible to communicate with Facebook itself, something very disconcerting.
Now….I’m not so sure, and while I’m confident that my account will be returned I think I’ll always feel a hint of anxiety or insecurity at how easy our lives can be turned on and off digitally. I went to a group I started and some stranger is now listed as admin as I was the only admin of the group. My posts disappeared from one group completely. On some of my facebook pages it’s as though I never existed. Could you imagine if Facebook did that to George Takei?
Is this our future? Is it our present? Do many of us not have the ability to communicate and socialize so that one day we’ll have to hang out with Operating systems like in the movie HER?
I hope not. Because nothing can replace human interaction. Fake is not real. Artificial is never Organic.
So this weekend I’ll focus on human non digital living. Less time in front of a machine isn’t a bad thing.
And if you get a chance check out the Movie Her as it’s an amazing ride!