Pros and Cons of the Internet Age

The Internet is a wonderful thing; information at the click of a button, hours of entertainment, easy ways to connect with friends (old and new) around the world. The Internet, as it turns out, is also a terrible thing that can consume your entire day with mindless clicking around. As always, there are two sides to every story, and it’s important to hear both.

The pros of the Internet are pretty clear: with everything electronic, virtually any question can be answered with a few clicks on a keyboard. Also, with the Internet around, there is no way to be bored. Games, social networking sites, blogs, and many other sites are just as easily accessed as information, and often hold hours of engaging material for the casual browsers to dabble in. Sites such as YouTube, Tumblr, Pinterest, and other similar websites are excellent places to share and expand upon ideas – old and new – and with so many people only a computer screen away, it’s easy to carve out a little niche, and work on whatever inspirational thing is going on. Sharing ideas is easy and quick, and everyone with WiFi can have a voice.

The cons of the Internet come in when a person slips from casual browsing to full-on obsession. A few funny videos or a quick look at some pictures can easily devolve into hours of clicking on related topics, until suddenly you’re watching videos of some random cat, not exactly sure how you got there, but knowing it’s not at all related to what you originally intended to look at. Seemingly limitless content can also be a negative; while some of it can be insightful, it also has the potential to be offensive. Since wars of opinion on the Internet are not fought in person, some people forget that the person they’re talking to is just that; a person. It’s easy to forget yourself in the twists and turns of the Google searchbar, and once you’ve fallen down the rabbit hole, it’s hard to get out.

The truth of the matter is, whether you like it or not, the Internet in all its glory is here to stay (and for me, that’s a positive thing). So be careful what you search, and use it to the fullest.

What do you like and dislike about the Internet?

Check out this article for inspiration on unplugging for a couple of days.

Image: Dennis Skley