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Media: Captive in the Age of the Computer

Joined: 10/19/2010
Posts: 44
*Written by D.J. Schaefer from Waukesha, WI. I would like my article to be featured in the media.

“There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.” This is the idea brought forth in 1977 by Ken Olsen, the president of Digital Equipment, once a leading vendor in computer systems and software. In 2011 our idea of the necessity of the computer has vastly changed. Rather than talk to our friends or actually study hard, many people’s ideas are transfused by a system of wired devices. The media that affects me the most is that of the information age. It seems that even soon the veins that course though our bodies will be replaced by wires. I feel we are being forced into an age we are not yet responsible to deal with.

As I go from class to class technology is of common site. Rather than talk to their friends you see kids texting away, careful to make sure a teacher won’t catch them. The prized possession of the cell phone has replaced the human voice. To tell the truth, personally I have never even sent a text. Texting though is a problem that affects me daily. Every class you see kids using phones to check Facebook, text or play games, giving the teacher the highest disrespect possible. They try being sneaky putting a purse or binder on their desk to hide their phone use, but everyone knows, even the teachers. Testing for many is now considered a joke. While I’m yanking my hair out over an answer, there are some people don’t even bother to study, and look up the answers on their phone or text their friend for the answers. Technological advances were meant to make us smarter, but I think much of them are dumbing us up.

In high school we are nudged to grasp the power of the keyboard over the power of the pen. Cursive is now becoming a handwriting of past. Like many before, it is a skill that is now disappearing. Many elementary schools don’t even teach cursive anymore. I am in the 11th grade and many of my classmates are unable or unwilling to write in the much quicker cursive. Even now as I write, I am clicking away at my keyboard. Mailing handwritten letters may soon be a thing of the past in total. Rather than write you could just send an instant email. Who knows, maybe a hundred years from now humans will not even be able to operate a pen. The Spanish novelist Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra once said, “The pen is the tongue of the mind”. Then what is the computer?

As years advance and as technology advances we must ask ourselves one thing. Is this source of media friend or foe? This reliance on information age media is a vice which we are unable to break. It is a barrier to our real knowledge and emotions. It is the 21st century.
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Comment by KitKat

Joined: 11/27/2010
Posts: 11
I don't agree that it's bad to say it's bad to be encouraged to type instead of write. I'm not saying it's good when kids aren't good at handwriting because you do need to be able to write, but typing is still important. In this day and age we need to be able to type simply because it's efficient, but also because everybody else uses it. To get a job you need to be able to type, and to communicate with people who to receive a handwritten letter would be weird (they might not even reply, as it is less efficient for them), you need to be able to type an email. Like you said 'it is the 21st Century' and that means computing and technology is essential, as it has become part of our lives, whether we like it or not.

Sorry if this comment seems negative - I like how you wrote your story/question thingymejig and everyone's free to an opinion:) Also, sorry that this comment's quite long and not especially constructive. You can delete it if you like (if that's possible). :)
Posted: Tuesday, March 8, 2011 7:18:57 PM
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Comment by pgarbero

Joined: 10/19/2010
Posts: 44
Sure, typing is surly more efficient for many people. I probably even type more than I write by hand. We though cannot become too reliant on typing. With typing you lose a sense of real emotions and knowledge. You depend to much on spell-check and even forget how to spell, I know I have. If we use typing constantly we ourselves become like the computers we manufactured, lacking any emotion. In the end though it is the 21st century, and like it or not we will all eventually become a master ways of the computer.
Posted: Wednesday, March 9, 2011 12:11:53 AM
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Comment by michness

Joined: 1/25/2011
Posts: 210

I'm the Writing Intern for

We wanted to let you know that your essay for our Teens and Media writing contest was one of the finalists. Congratulations!

Here's the link to the contest summary page. We'll be formally announcing the winner soon.

Two things...
1) Megan, our PR Coordinator, will be in touch with you via email (the one you used to register for to see if you'd like to be named in our national press release going out via PR Newswire.
2) Feel free to share this news with your friends and family. To be named an essay finalists in our national writing competition is a big deal. Our previous winners have been talked about on and other media outlets.

Congrats again. We look forward to seeing more of your essays/writing on Thanks for helping us in our mission of creating the world's largest pool of cross-generational stories.

Posted: Tuesday, April 12, 2011 3:26:58 PM
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Comment by pgarbero

Joined: 10/19/2010
Posts: 44
Thank you very much Michelle for choosing my essay as a finalist.
Posted: Saturday, April 16, 2011 5:29:06 AM
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