For some strange reason people believe that the digital world is a recipe for eliminating personal interaction. I disagree. There is nothing about digital interaction and automation that requires the elimination of social interaction, if anything, the digital world has provided a means to increase socialization.
I am frustrated at times be the short sightedness of many when it comes to the use of social media and new digital tools. While talking to a friend on Voxer who is a technology coordinator I heard one of the most insane statements I can imagine. He repeated a comment by someone at his school that said, “put the computers away, let the learning begin” to which I had no response. What an incredible lack of understanding of the world. Kids live in a world where computers are always on. They are always connected to the digital world. Why come to school to turn that off?
The concerns include safety, and of course a worry about what can be accessed. There is also a concern that devices take away from the personal interactions we have each day. Automation and digitalization do help people avoid personal interaction, but they also connect people in new, meaningful ways. I have personally benefited from the social interactions, the personal experience that comes along with the digital world.
Rather than hold these back from kids, we should be embracing and modeling how positive social connections can improve your life. We should be showing these kids how to keep it personal yet positive in the digital world, as they will experience many more digital connections than face to face ones over the course of their lives.