“Internet, the Terminator”: Destroyer or Protector?

I’ve always thought it was so interesting that The Terminator who was the destroyer in T1 comes back as the protector in T2.  A little reprogramming and voila he has become an irresistible force for good.

The Internet could be called “The Destroyer” as sure as any villan Superman or the Fantastic Four ever faced, and many have portrayed it as such.  It keeps us inside, keeps us from having REAL interactions with REAL people.  It causes our vitamin D deficiencies because we don’t get enough sun.  It is responsible for the downfall of the family because everyone is on his or her own computer instead of sharing soul-bonding conversation.  It brings STRANGERS into our households with its easy access to the entire population of the world, including every criminal mastermind who has a laptop.

I’m thinking, no, not really. This hasn’t been my experience.

Like anything else, the Internet can be used in a bad way or a good way.  It’s your choice.  If you sit confined to your screen for hours and hours every day, then you aren’t going to have much worth writing about, are you?  If you allow your children’s muscles to atrophy by giving them unlimited computer time–well you may want to reconsider that decision.  If you sacrifice all of your important personal relationships to follow the blog of your favorite celebrity, well, I’ll leave that choice up to you.  Remove the extremities, however, and what you have left is an incredible tool of beauty and camaraderie.

This was not the blog I intended to write.  I started one yesterday on romance that was full of research and well-considered commentary; then I began this week’s Blogging 101 assignment–the last for the class.  We have been instructed to get out there in cyberspace and see who else is talking and listening.  Guess what?  Five hours later I am sitting at my dining room table, tears running down my cheeks for the lady whose dog just died.  I never met this woman and I am unlikely to ever know her beyond the screen of my computer.  But I also held a dog I loved while it drew its last breath, so now I am bound to this stranger by the common experience of our humanity.

How can something that brings us together as human beings with almost no regard for our appearances be a bad thing?  If I am ready to give up my dream of being a writer because I think I am the only 53-year-old idealist with a love of fantasy, isn’t it a good thing for me to discover that I am not alone?  If I can connect with others who will help me  hone my craft and push me to see “projects begun” through to “projects done,” isn’t that a good thing?  I like the Internet, and I’m glad I know it.

I’m just sayin’.

One thought on ““Internet, the Terminator”: Destroyer or Protector?

  1. I like the internet as well, and since I have started my blog, I have made it a habit to read at least 3 others blogs daily and to make a little comment. Just reading what others have to say on whatever topic they choose has been eye openning for me. Yours openned my heart a little. Thanks, Bill

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