''No, I Can't Tonight. I Need to Charge My Phone''

On Wednesday in a fit of being wise and mature I watched a documentary. The documentary was about the iMensch (iHuman), it tried to answer the question if we rule the internet or the internet rules us.
As it is with an impartial broadcaster the question was never really answered but you got enough information to try and answer it yourself.
It looked at people who make money via popular YouTube clips, or if pupils were even able to do proper research without the internet because that would mean going to the library! That is just not possible! Books! WHAT IS THAT??!?
It also looked at the smartphone. Do we rule it? Or does it rule us?
When I used to be a wee blogger I had to charge my phone once a week. That was before it became smart. Now it shouts at me every day to plug it in. It demands to be updated. Then there isn't enough storage space for the update. I need that app for that other app to work, but for that app I need more storage space and no, you can't install that app on the memory card just because. While in that case it is a dictator, this isn't what they were talking about. Google Glasses (pah!) were looked at, the iWatch (why?) was also mentioned. Then the usual mixture of facts, some humour even, theories, and scientists saying many things. I can only recommend it, just that you need a profound knowledge of German beforehand.

This got me thinking … I know that I am not very reliant on my smartphone. I admit I have my calender on it, but utmost important events are always written down as well. Should that fail, the utmost importantest (yes, I know) events have a back-up in such a way that Google knows of them. Well, better Google than Facebook … Facebook has done the weirdest thing now; it has sold my email address and I'm getting on the last name I use there – not my real one – spam emails. Shocking, ey? No, not really.

Besides the original reason of the phone invention – calling people – I wouldn't need it. I have a Twitter App, a Tumblr App, various messengers because you can't combine them.
Somehow, I have noticed I'm becoming old. Not that I make a noise while sitting down, or complain about my back. Rather because while I got Snapchat the last time I used it was during one of my Top Gear Slash Snapchat Adventures. Yes, the pun is intended.
usually along those lines
While I still watch Top Gear, I don't use Snapchat any longer. Then there is YouNow, of which I had never heard and sounds totally useless. 

If I am brutally honest, I enjoy the distance. Sometimes I don't want to reply just now, and just finish watching the episode. Or maybe I've just had an exhausting day so no, I don't want to listen to you whining because someone lost something on television … Always being available is a horrible concept. 
What if you're getting bad news via e-mail. I got the mail that a library doesn't think I'm qualified enough while having a lovely day trip. Had I not excepted it, it could have ruined the day.
I'd like to believe that me and my smartphone could part ways very easily … Actually, that might come from the fact that I ruin my smartphones every two years (cracked into two, water, battery, screen; in case you were wondering) and then it takes a bit until my new phone arrives. Hence, I make sure that I am not very depended on it. Or is very expensive.

While my smartphone has not become an essential part of my life, I fear that the internet has. There is the fact that this whole blog runs on the internet.
I have been wondering … why? I don't have a flood of readers, so it can't be fame-whoring. It can't be money. I like writing, true. More important is that the internet gives me freedom. Besides law restrictions there is no censure, I can write about everything that I want and reach people who would want to read that. Imagine if I would write for some very green eco newspaper printed on recycled paper. I doubt that they would have tolerated me writing that VW's cock-up won't matter much, stop making such a fuss. Or last week where I briefly mentioned that electric cars won't save the world. I would have been thrown out at the very moment … While there is a slight difference between the – let's call it – blog persona and the real me, I can write whatever I want.
In any case, which newspaper would take me anyway? Hmm, yes hello? No, I haven't studied journalism. Erm … it's not always news related. No, I just write stuff so someone can feel more competent in the face of my incompetence. CV? Sorry, I recently deleted that one. Sometimes I make bad jokes. Other times I try to be serious but sugar-coat it with humour. Hello? Heeelloo?

Then I stream films and shows from the internet. I get my music from it. I happily scroll through tumblr when I'm bored. I write some non-sense on Twitter. I use the electric library … let's not mention that the internet was an essential part during my academic career.
Furthermore, you can't apply for jobs via mail any longer, you need to .pdf your CV and then send an electronic mail!

This has given me the idea to copy an idea from the documentary: live two days without a smartphone seemed to be far too easy for me. Instead I am considering living two days without the internet. It's easy if you're working or similar. However, imagine a whole weekend without the internet. 

At first it sounds brilliant, curl yourself up in a corner with a good book … but how long does it take until you want to tell someone that the book is good. Then you can curl yourself up in front of the television. Just that on Sundays it's never very good, okay so DVDs? But you don't have those any longer because you use Amazon Prime or Neflix don't you? Maybe you use a kindle as well … so you can't get any new books should you want a different one.
Even just the small message to a friend 80km away from you becomes tricky. You just can't. You have no phone, you have no internet … You could write a letter but by the time this will have reached your friend you can already use your phone again. Also it's the weekend and post offices don't work.

The internet is just there, you can't turn it off. It can be a nice place. Without the internet I would have never met a wonderful Londoner, a slightly annoying European, and a lovely European. I couldn't keep contact with my expat friend. Let's not mention the people who sobbed alongside me when Top Gear ended. Actually, I wouldn't even have known about that little car show without the internet. As it is with most things in life, it's neither good nor bad. Just depends on what you do with it.

Furthermore, I fear if someone actually manages to turn it off, we're all screwed. Or just very bored. I'd need a different way to find 25 people who can be bothered to read my writing each week. Tricky, because I'm already surprised that so many can be bothered to read it at all …

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