The right to privacy is often understood as an essential requirement for the realization of the right to freedom of expression. Undue interference with individuals’ privacy can both directly and indirectly limit the free development and exchange of ideas … An infringement upon one right can be both the cause and consequence of an infringement upon the other. […] Communications surveillance should be regarded as a highly intrusive act that potentially interferes with the rights to freedom of expression and privacy and threatens the foundations of a democratic society.
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On Mourning And Internet Self-Expression
People deal with shock in different ways. While most of us sit at our desks waiting for the Internet to insufficiently answer our questions as to why the Sandy Hook shootings happened, many of us are also dealing with the banalities of day-to-day work on a pre-holiday Friday; “It is terrible what happened in Connecticut. Did you get my email about Monday’s meeting?”
These types of conversations around tragic events, both online and offline, cause existential discord: There are very few people who wouldn’t agree that the shooting of children (children!) is an extremely horrific event. We are definitely in the majority.
But it is okay to talk about work right now just like it’s okay to be extremely distraught over this news. Humans have very strange and different ways of processing sadness.
When I found out what is possibly some of the saddest news I’ve ever received, I drove from Huntington Beach to LA and sat silently in my car in the parking lot of a public library for 3 hours. And then drove back. Inexplicably.
And no, I did not tweet about it and won’t post what it is here — Because I prefer to deal with some things privately.
But it’s fine if you want to tweet about your feelings regarding the Connecticut shooting, or anything really. Or not. And if some of you don’t feel like writing or sharing a story about a photosharing app (or do) for the next couple of hours, that’s okay too.
From my personal perspective, I do everything through social media. With that being said, I may be biased as a twenty one year old having grown up in the world of social networking, consuming media, watching television, texting friends constantly, blogging thoughts and being an active member of the internet.
Yes, I do instead ignore the online world and my internet enablers and cope with situations on my own. I do choose to go for a walk and not look at my phone sometimes. We all do need to de-charge, unplug and there are indeed times where I choose to cope with situations without access to the internet.
It is so easy to do otherwise. I now live in a society where our thoughts flow into our fingers which then type out our feelings, our opinions, our thoughts onto keyboards. They’re either publicized or put into a private blog, an email, a message. Or they are tweeted out, put into a Facebook post for our family and friends to see.
The feeling of our feelings and thoughts posted or published is something different than putting them down on pen and paper. It’s possible that we may feel relieved as we got something off our chests. Or it is also possible that it helps us grieve, helps us cope with whatever tough situation we’re facing. Maybe having the audience of online family and friends, or even strangers, helps as well.
Either way, in today’s world, the action of pushing the publish button coincides with with a click. And a relieving breath.