I have always been fascinated with how obsessed people are with people that they've never met. In the first writing prompt, Hector Carral argues that there isn't anything wrong with wanting to communicate with people over social media or with the help of technology if he is genuinely more interested in getting to know those people. While making his argument, he states "is it so bad to prefer talking to a long-distance partner using a smartphone than with someone who does not interest me but happens to be sitting next to me?"
To be quite frank, I say yes. Yes, it is so bad for someone to be so disinterested in another human being. It use to be that when you were out somewhere, people made it a point to converse with strangers that they encounter. It use to be that while waiting at the dentist office, you'd glance over at the person sitting next to you and ask "it's quite a beautiful day today isn't it?" or something of the likes to which they would reply with something cheesy and quirky which would then engage you both in an interesting conversation, and when you left that office that day, you would've felt satisfy knowing that you just met someone knew who had a lot of interesting things to say, and it also meant that you probably learned something knew that day. Now people are so engaged with their technologies that they don't even notice the world around them.
The first problem that I have with Hector's argument is that the person next to him couldn't possibly be of interest to him. How can someone assume that someone else isn't interesting if they haven't taken the time to talk to them? Strangers have the ability to easily become people we can network with. The same person sitting next to you that you presume to be so disinteresting could be could be in the same sorority/fraternity as you, could have gone to the same university as you, could be working in a company that you might want to one day work at. By refusing to engage with them, you have now just screwed yourself out of a great opportunity. That isn't to say that every person you encounter is always going to help you out in life. Sometimes you meet new people just for the sake of meeting them. Sometimes the people you encounter, you'll never see again. Personally, I think that that's the beauty in meeting and interacting with strangers. You may not see them again but you'll have that memory to cherish and you would have gotten an opportunity to learn something new about a different culture.
Another thing that people seem not to understand is that almost everything in the media is glamorized. We have filters, and so many other things to help us deceived people in thinking that our lives are awesome and perfect when realistically it is not. What we see on the media is only what people want us to see. The long-distance relationship you have that you admire so much could be nothing but lies. Catfish is a perfect example of that. People spend decades interacting with people who aren't even real.
Technology is a great tool when it comes to keeping in touch with others and communicating. But it shouldn't be our only form of communication. A healthy balance goes a long way.