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Looking Back At Social Media

Our generation is special because we have grown up through a revolution of technology.  The first thing we do when we wake up is pick up our smart phones and scroll through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, you name it!  Although these apps are fairly new within the past couple of years or so, we always some how stayed connected with our friends, family, and people around the world! Let’s see if you remember what our social media was like when we were just in elementary school and middle school:

KOL

Who can forget their first email account? With custom templates, we got to choose funny icons that we could change every week.  We played the games and chatted with friends named “puppyluvxoxo123” or ridiculous names like that.  This was many kids’ first experience with online connect.

Club Penguin

Admit it. You have spent hours upon hours playing on this site. Creating your own penguin and traveling around to the different shops and areas to play tons of games was time consuming.  Everyone understands the frustration of losing in the Mine game.  Nothing was more fun than begging your parents to buy the membership, building your dream igloo with furniture and colors that we low key really wanted to live in and wishing Puffles were real cause they would make the cutest pets.

AIM

When we got a little too old to KOL, we moved on to bigger and better things.  That little window to the side of our screen was our entire social life in general.  Hearing the little door open to see who just logged on was the thrill of the day, especially when it was the guy from homeroom you’ve been crushing on.  And who can forget making the profiles with colors, fonts, inside jokes with friends and inspirational quotes?

Before we were allowed to have our own cellphones, calling up a friend to go online was how we communicated, and setting away messages telling people to “call/text ###### “ was our way of saying, “I don’t want to talk to you” rather than leaving someone on read.

Zwinky

I personally don’t know many people who had this, but the concept of it was similar to club penguin.  It is meant for kids that are 13 and over, being that curse words didn’t ban you.  There were tons of fun games and things to do on there.  Rather than decorating an igloo, you decorated a dorm room.  My favorite part was getting coins and unlocking new hairstyles and outfits.

MySpace

I know Myspace became really popular once we hit 7th and 8th grade.  I deleted it after 5 minutes because I honestly though that “Tom” guy that friended everyone was a creeper, so I got scared. That doesn’t mean I don’t understand the peace sign photos and mirror selfies from your Env. I never fully got the full experience of Myspace, but I always thought it was pretty cool that you could add music and graphics to your page.

Facebook Early 2000’s

But I did have facebook, and this is what it looked like.  I began getting really into facebook, using the Picnik app to edit my pictures and putting pins on my cork board.

Today, Facebook seems to be the least used out of all the social media platforms for our generation. I personally will always be a fan of it because it keeps me updated on friends and family who I rarely see. I can keep in touch with them and keep up with things going on in their life. I love logging on and seeing pictures of my nephew almost everyday because I only really see him about once a month.

 

So, think about it.  We lowkey miss all these sites, but what was another thing that was so great about social media back then? It wasn’t right in front of our faces 24/7.  Before smart phones, we would log on to our computer after school, after dinner, after hanging out with friends.  During the times in between, we were out enjoying ourselves and living life.  We were riding bikes, going on adventures, and just being out and about and then catching up online at the end of our day.  Even if we were just at someone’s house, we were finding something fun and exciting to do.  Texting because someone is trying to reach you is a different story than constantly logging on to the same app every 10 minutes to see if anyone posted anything.  Now, most people can’t even sit through a movie without checking social media.  This generation has become so involved with the huge advance in technology that the convenience of access has cut into our time by distracting us from school, cutting into our time with our friends, with our significant other, or even while being out.    

It’s become an addiction in which we need to constantly see what other people are up to, and it’s causing us to take ourselves out of the present. Next time you log onto your Instagram page or send a Snapchat, think about what life was really like without out it, without always having it in the palm of our hand. Remember when we actually paid attention to the people right in front of us rather than what John Do was doing out in San Diego or what Kylie Jenner’s new selfie looked like?  Because I am involved with social media, I think it is a great tool.  It helps companies advertise and put their name and product out there. It’s great for sports and play by plays, getting news out there, putting your own work out there and just to over all make connections and be involved with the world in a way you can’t do physically. But don’t let it take you out of your world and away from the people around you.  

Alexis hails from Bergen County, New Jersey and is a junior at William Paterson University. To her friends she's known as Alexis or Lex. She studies Media Production and Graphic design and plans to study marketing or sports management. She also works for WPU Recreational Services as a Fitness Center attendant and videographer. Alexis is a sports junkie, especially for the New York Yankees. She also loves film, television, social media, and playing sports. Her dream one day is to work in the sports media industry whether it is behind the scenes or being the next Erin Andrews! Her favorite shows are Friends and Friday Night LIghts, her favorite movies are The Dark Knight trilogy and Back To The Future. She enjoys all music from Rap to Country. She can mostly be found either studying in Hobart Hall or working out in the Rec Center.
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