I’m not exactly what you would call a world traveller, though I would like to be. I mean, there was this one time, when I was ten, that I went ten miles into Canada and hopped back and forth across the US/Canada border about a million times over the course of 20 minutes, so yeah, I’m totally cool like that.
Other than that, I have travelled through the majority of the states and even visited a few of them. I’ve never had a pen pal, and other than my Canada Adventure of Awesome, and a few manic trips to live in another state, I’ve been mostly in the same city my whole life.
And yet! I know people from Dubai, England, Ireland, the UK, Australia, Japan, Canada, Mexico and Iran.
On here, I have readers from Canada, the UK, and Cambodia.
I would never have got the chance to know this wonderfully diverse group that I know if it weren’t for the internets of awesome. It’s only 20 years old, but I feel like we already take it for granted. I mean, think, if you told yourself 20 years ago, that in just a few years you were going to be able to chat instantaneously with someone from just about anywhere in the world?
I would have called bullshit on my future self.
This thing… This invisible, intangible world within our world that we’ve created is absolutely astounding, and I often stand in absolute awe of what we’ve been able to create. A complete digital world that makes the connectivity of phones look like child’s play.
I still often see people refer to the internet, and the subsequent connections to people far outside your physical reach, as still not… real somehow. As if face to face interactions are the only true way to befriend someone or have fullfilling relationships. I don’t quite believe in the internet/IRL disconnect anymore. I’ve met some absolutely astounding people that have changed my life for the better.
I’m exposed to more culture, more information and more learning in a week then I had been in years prior to the internet. Amazingly, though media may say otherwise, there’s more to the internet then cats and memes.
Though cats are cute…. If they have a return policy. No clawed, psychotic, litter box roaming, fuzzy cuddle ball of doom is going to stay at my house.
*clears throat* Anyway… The internets…
I love being able to learn about the news from other countries. I love being able to talk to people from other states and from other countries. It’s beautiful to see the differences in cultural view points across the world. It’s also good solace to see that I’m not the only one that thinks my country is going just a little (see: a lot) nutter right now.
The internet makes me proud. It may seem silly, but think about the level of human acheivement this strange, intangible world is. From the original message boards to social media powerhouses. From internet commenters from hell to the wonderful world of social change organizations, anything is possible on the internet.
You can be who you want, and do what you want. You can be a superhero, you can be a super villian. You have more ways to help than ever before, and more ways to hurt as well.
It’s changed the world, and I’d say for the better. But remember what Uncle Ben said:
“With great power comes great responsibility.”