Put Down the Phone–We Are Rockin’ With Bon Jovi!

Posted on May 11, 2011

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My son and I went to see Bon Jovi at Nationwide Arena last night, to revisit my youth (though I’d never revisit age 14 on a bet), and expose my kid to an arguable  rock god (so he can see Big Time Rush is not exactly classic rock-n-roll).

It should have been an evening filled with an awesome stage show (video screens that rotated and lifted into a staggered staircase!), dancing babes (Bon Jovi noted a few in front were topless) and blasting out lyrics known by heart at lung’s peak (“LIVIN’ ON A PRAYER!!!!”).

It was all of those things.

It was also a lesson in how social media and the tools we use for it have overwhelmed our lives.

Weird Al Tweets Bon JoviIt started as we awaited the show’s start (45 minutes late? C’mon, this isn’t Jersey, Jon), as people whiled away the time taking pictures, tweeting, surfing Facebook and playing games on their phones. But then the lights went down, and nearly bare-chested Bon Jovi came up and almost everyone–kept playing on their phone. OK, I can see taking a photo or two–I took one! But live streaming the show? Shooting images and then spending five minutes rifling through them to post to Facebook. Tweeting every lyric of every song (only a slight exaggeration).

I have news for you: We do not need to see your every experience, or every thought you have during a given experience. You deserve the chance to actually experience it for yourself. Alone. Without sharing. Just for you.

Now I love my social media, and it has its time and place. But have we gotten so overwhelmed by our technology that we can’t put it down and experience events without distraction or filter?

OK–spill: Was it you? Who was there and who tweeted? And what did you tweet about? Or what was your status update? Admit it–were you really just trying to rub in for those who missed the sold-out show that they missed “Wanted Dead or Alive”? Show me why the best way to experience events is to share it.

Maybe my kid and I actually missed out by only sharing the experience with each other.

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Posted in: Journalism