Photo: Because of popular and “democratizing” applications like Pixlr, even amateurs can indulge in some form of “express-yourself” therapy. The Internet can either be an empowering or destructive tool largely depending on a user’s net routines.
Currently comprised by billions of pages, blogs and articles on almost anything and everything, the world of cyberspace has spurred countless possibilities that would intimidate even a time traveller coming from a world just fifteen or twenty years before ours. Who would have thought that in the Philippines today, the idea of government spying on how Filipinos use their computers to “like” Facebook posts would spur heated public debate – just fifteen years ago such issue would have seemed too farfetched even for homegrown science fiction.
I read an imported science fiction novel entitled Flying to Valhalla sometime in the late 90’s. That time, I found it hard to believe in its idea of a time in the future when people could instantly get information on anything they’d like to know more about by just searching for it on an information source using a computer. It was the age before the Internet became popularly used, the time before Wikipedia killed the business of Colliers Encyclopedia. The idea presented in that sci-fi book seemed so impossible back then. Nowadays, even grade school kids are turning to the likes of Wikipedia and Google for their information assignments.
Given how obiquitous the Internet has become, urgent social challenges have to do with making sure its use is tempered for the common good. That it serves to draw friends and colleagues closer, not destroy their relations as what some “chats” gone awry have done several times in the past. That it is used to build up self-esteem but not as a tool for displaying life excesses. Vanity and self-adulation destroy the reason behind the Internet’s invention, which is to make interconnections.
The Internet officially has billions of pages based only on the number of indexed ones. Definitely one way of keeping oneself from getting all lost and alienated in its vast, vast sea and swarm of pages and applications is by creating Internet routines that are not draining but are “therapeutic”. For destressing I now turn to Indian chillout music on YouTube.
For spiritual upliftment, I never forget to read the blog of Bro. Eli Soriano. His blog esoriano.wordpress.com has won in the 2009 Open Web Awards presented by an international tech-and-media site, the very famous Mashable.com. Truly something every Filipino at heart would be proud of.