Landing upon a particular discussion topic was a challenge. Naturally, I resorted to topics of which I had great familiarity, specifically sociological topics that impacted large waves of people. To start my research path, I rediscovered a 15-page research paper written for ICM 501, exploring the influence of text messaging on teenagers’ formation of romantic relationships. In the greater spectrum, I chose to use this topic as a basis, and instead report on how technologies impact interpersonal relationships across various demographics. In the modern world, we not only have the convenience of text messaging, but we have Skype, Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, Instagram, picture-messaging, etc. To put it lightly, the list is endless and far more advanced than the old-fashioned phone call.
I feel qualified to report on such a topic because I grew up during the technological boom. I was sitting in 5th grade classrooms with students who held call phones (flip phones, at the time). I attended college with students who sported fancy Mac computers, not to mention that everyone had some sort of computer device. I sat alongside classmates who chatted on smart phones, took notes on iPads, listened to iPods and read books on Kindles. Although not all of these technologies function as communication mediums, I have been swimming in the seas of technology for years. In fact, I cannot remember a time when text messaging, emailing or Facebook did not flood my life. Since technology has so heavily influence relationships in my life, as well as the lives of my same-age peers, I can directly relate to the research. By relating to the research, I can attempt to make sense of it through the lens of an individual who experienced it firsthand.