Anyone looking for StuffNThings on seniorpeoplemeet.com or similar websites is going to be disappointed.
It's unfortunate that in this great new era where we have tools for connecting with other people that previous generations never even dreamed of, it's harder than ever to connect with real people to develop meaningful relationships…personal, working or otherwise.
Technology has made it possible for us to communicate, and stay close to others as never before: email, social media, web sites, carry-around-with-you telephones that even have video so you can see what you're talking with….and so much more! I love it all.
So where's the tragedy? We've all become commodities! We now pay for the privilege of meeting and communicating with each other behind a screen name that is tied to a profile that pretends to tell others who we are and what we're all about.
That screen name and profile (and maybe a picture) can be searched by others who say they would like to find others who share common interests…the ideal mate, the ideal employee, the ideal employer. Searchers pick and choose who they want to connect with and pay for the privilege of getting in touch with the "real deal".
I have chosen to opt-out. I don't like this game. OK, so call me an old fogey. Tell me I just don't get it. Tell me I'm a stick in the mud.
I think we're heading down the wrong path. Here we are, with the greatest tool for people to interact with and collaborate with each other…and we're blowing it.
Of course, part of this is that we're all scared of being ripped off by insidious perverts who send us spam by the tons – often actually addressed to us from our own email address. We're tired of wasting so much time looking for each other. And, we're just so busy that many don't have the time to get out and socialize in real time.
But now, where are we? We've allowed ourselves to hide behind recorded phone answering machines with menu after menu of selections to weed through. Now we're wasting precious time weeding through email feverishly trying to find ways to filter out the junk. We're wasting hour after precious hour squeezing our multi-dimensional selves into single-dimensional databases so that hopefully someone will find something they like in what we put forth – and be willing to pay for the privilege of meeting us. And we're called on to sift through all those same databases looking for a real person so we can pay for the privilege of emailing them. We are called on to pay for the privilege of looking through countless job databases looking for a job – with many of those databases either copied from other sources on the web or simply filled with expired listings or links that go nowhere…and hoping that some employer will take us seriously. Worse…if we do play the game, the only way we will ever make a connection is if we make it through a series of email interchanges before the other gets side tracked and lost in the shuffle before we can finally meet face to face…often to discover that what we thought we were buying has no resemblance to reality. And, lordy, what happens to those who don't have good writing and typing skills? They may be exactly the person you've been looking for – but without the right combination of skills, they haven't a prayer.
Nope, I'm not interested in this game. I refuse to pay for the privilege of meeting you. I refuse to pay for the privilege of applying for a job. I refuse to hide behind a screen name. I'm certainly not a one-dimensional person. And I'm not looking for one either.