I saw this sign when passing a cafe in Greenwich one day. After my initial chuckle it struck me how unusual it was for an establishment to actually advertise that it doesn’t have wifi, presuming that any laptop, tablet or smartphone carrying customer would walk out when they weren’t allowed the coveted password. There’s no doubt we’re far too preoccupied with what’s going on the 24/7 digital world that we’re starting the ignore the moments that we find ourselves in day-to-day reality.
It pains me to confess that I can’t remember the last time I woke up in the morning and didn’t do one of the following: a) scroll through Twitter to see the shenanigans of those I follow from the night before, b) look at any Facebook notifications that have appeared overnight, or c) checked out Instagram to see what’s going on in the world of amateur photography. We fill the interludes of our days with checking statuses and updating virtual strangers with what we’re thinking about, not forgetting that a meal didn’t happen unless snapped on Instagram and you haven’t met new people until they’ve accepted your far too eager Facebook friend request. Say what you will about your own habits, but there’s no doubt we’re all hooked on 3G and wifi – and you most definitely do not want to be around an addict that can’t get their phone to connect…
I know how ironic this may sound coming from a blogger with an embarrassingly high tweet count of 10.4k (so big that they have to shorten it to this rather than writing out the full number), but I am saddened by our obsession with being “connected” everywhere we go. So, I applaud the unknown cafe I passed and all others that have signs similar to this one. Good for them for encouraging us to ditch our online followers or “friends” to actually socialise with the people we care enough about to spend time with in the flesh. Otherwise I fear it’s all dangerously close to the realms of antisocial media.