I’m Feeling Curious: How Social Media Feeds Our Obsessive Online Appetites?

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Described as a strong desire to know or learn something encompassed by an unusual and interesting object or fact, the term ‘curiosity’ is intended to indulge our insatiable need to consume information frequently.

This begs the question:

Is ‘Curiosity Killed the Cat’ an Obsolete Saying in Today’s Online Conversational Community?

Now, we’ve all heard of the phrase ‘curiosity killed the cat’ right? Said to warn someone not to ask too many questions about something, the popular idiom delineates a cautionary cue to detour people from getting into harm’s way.

What I’m feeling curious about establishing is whether or not social media has outdated this commonly used phrase and why the growing majority of us just can’t stomach the idea of simply logging off.

Pop Culture & Social Media

It’s safe to say that the overarching influence that social media has on popular culture is staggering, as information sharing via Facebook and other online platforms like Twitter, TikTok and Instagram has reached an all-time high in gratifying our yearnings for instantaneous online entertainment.
Dare I mention the Kardashian/Jenner clan, but it’s fair to say that they are the pinnacles of pop culture in their own right and our boundless obsession with them, our impression of them, and our expression of them via social media is worth noting:

As a result of our alluring curiosity surrounding their dating lives, businesses, online platforms, and general day-to-day endeavours, the enmeshment of popular culture and social media has proven to be the perfect recipe for conjuring comical content for the thrill and enjoyment of online audiences alike.

Abiding by what’s been circulating on the socials lately, it’s apparent that social media has the power to influence public opinion on the diverse digital landscape of conversational subject matter, ranging from unjust judicial systems to reported online celebrity feuds:

  1. The Kyle Rittenhouse Backlash

2. Resurrecting the Christina Aguilera/Britney Spears Beef

Deemed as newsworthy to the greater online community as a fitting contribution to popular culture, the substance surrounding this kind of material has enabled social media users to repurpose this information and creatively formulate and share their own opinions on their platforms to drive awareness and engagement to the topic using countless commentary and replies:

With social media used as a mechanism to stimulate our curiosity for discovering, liking, sharing, and commenting on entertaining consumable content, we in turn feed our ravenous obsession for the augmented sense of reality it serves.

Simply put, we love the drama …

… But how much drama is too much drama?

When Does our Incessant Curiosity with Social Media Become Out of Bounds?

What most fascinates me about social media is its limitless capacity to cater to our curiosity and feed our ceaseless desire to constantly be ‘in the know’. Moreover, I’m interested in the adverse effects this phenomenon has on normal human cognitive functioning, how we view the world, and the people inhabiting it.

“I wrote for TIME in 2019, urging Facebook and Silicon Valley to adopt human-driven technology over addictive, dangerous algorithms. Nothing happened.” – Roger McNamee

Also raising compelling refutations of our online interactivity outlined in his book titled ‘Ten Arguments for Deleting your Social Media Accounts Right Now’, world-renowned scientist-pioneer Jaron Lanier unpacks the dangers of social media and its toxic effects on users.

Through their collaboration with world-renowned eyewear brand Ray-Ban, Facebook has now introduced ‘Ray-Ban Stories’ to the global market, leaving consumers divided about Facebook’s new ‘smart glasses’ and implications surrounding privacy protection.

Don’t get me started on the ‘artificial reality contact lens’ concept introduced by the University of Washington:

Would you wear those?

I can barely put on regular contact lenses.

Although the P.O.V virtual reality-style features are in some respects breaking new ground in the world of tech and visual impairment treatment, the overall VR contact lens concept borders on creepy and detached for me.

There’s just something about this ever-expansive phenomenon of online innovation that screams ‘sophisticated modern-day spyware’ and that’s straight-up alarming to me.

My Final Thoughts

Social media coupled with the outrageously dramatized nature of reality television has distorted our view of others and ourselves, subsequently resulting in the deterioration and degradation of human emotion and empathy – all for our amusement.

Regardless, with the increasingly rapid pace of information sharing extending across social media platforms vastly and voraciously, our curiosity for this system of ‘knowledge absorption’ – and I use this term loosely – is not going anywhere.

Our curiosity for consuming and sharing online content is here to stay.

Besides, it does have its benefits after all. For instance, I’m not all too mad that social media has afforded me a platform to occasionally entertain my own curiosity as an online ‘fly on the wall’ when romanticizing ideas about Rihanna’s behind the scenes antics:

 Now those are Ray-Ban Stories I’d be obliged to watch.

… But that’s just me.

In any case, we ultimately need to recognise that, as Uncle Ben puts it:

Great Power Equals Great Responsibility

Your power lies in your choice, so use it wisely.

3 Examples of Intriguing Social Media Posts to Pique your Curiosity & Question if they’re Worth your Attention

1. The struggles of navigating life as a really tall person

 

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2. The boundless scope of Snoop Dogg’s work commitments

3. What our favourite childhood characters could look like unclad

 

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