Monday, June 6, 2016

Integration of Technology Disintegrates Society

By Ryan Blaser, Madeline Vance and Rachel Tuley

"You can't upload love, you can't download time, you can't Google all of life's answers.You must actually live some of your life." -Paul Brandt

The integration of technology in our modern society has caused the disintegration of many social institutions such as the family, religion, and other interpersonal relationships. With the advent of the internet there is a vast expanse of information that is easily accessible to anyone. This can have profound effects on any aspect of society. For example, people who used to have free time can now fill it, with things that are much more trivial, instead of focusing on other more productive ways to use their time. Also, the media can take this information and spin it in order to push an agenda, thereby affecting the way something such as religion is seen in society.

She's there, but is she really "there"?

Ryan Blaser Talks Religion

Read more of Ryan's argument here.
Think about the news that you have viewed over the past six months. No doubt you have seen some of the "culture wars" between believers of religion and the LGBT community. Typically, in those articles or shows, how were the religious people portrayed? As you reflect on this, I want to argue that the way that religion is being portrayed has a negative effect on religion as a whole. Those who are not religious now have the grounds to view religion as discriminatory and home to bigotry, while those who are already affiliated with a religion could come to doubt their belief due to its unpopular sitting in society. This happens not only in the news, but in other major media outlets such as television, movies, and even social media. The integration of technology in our society has greatly accelerated this paradigm shift.

Madeline Vance Talks Families

Read more of Madeline's argument here.
How has your family been changed by the integration of technology? While certain sources of modern technology allow me to stay in touch with my family throughout the day and week, I have come to realize the major loosening of family ties that take place because of the integration of technology in our homes and society. Families that once spent time cooking, setting the table, and enjoying a homemade meal together are now simply disconnected robots that are plugged into the latest updates on their cellular device rather than gazing into each others eyes and inquiring about one's day and carrying on in wholesome conversation. Family relationships are disintegrating because of the integration of modern technology in our society.

Family members focused on their phones more than each other

Rachel Tuley Talks Relationships

Read more of Rachel's argument here
The study of relationships and technology fascinates me. In today's world, technology has redefined relationships - friendships, romantic relationships, and business relationships. Technology has become more so a barrier to relationships than an aide. Through looking at multiple sources and speaking with several authorities, I have created a blog that describes in detail the effect that technology has on relationships in today's world.

What is more real? The physical or the virtual?

Works Cited



3. Knight, Garry. "Friends with Mobile Phones." Wikimedia. Accessed 12 June 2016,


  1. That was the coolest video ever! It really grabs your attention because you are talking about the project while doing it. I loving the ending when you break the fourth wall and ask the audience a question. Extremely creative. I'm excited to see what the final product looks like, as well as your finished individual blog posts.

  2. Many in the group have argued that technology is changing relationships, specifically within families and in face-to-face interactions. These studies I found through Youtube highlight how technology is actually changing the wiring in our brain.
    The first one ( ) refers to studies such as a new syndrome called “phantom vibrate syndrome” where if someone regularly attached to their phone leaves it somewhere, they simulate feeling a vibrate, even though there is no phone there. Another element they highlighted was in face-to-face conversations 30-40% is usually dedicated to communicating your own experiences. But in online communication 80% is dedicated to one self, increasing the amount of dopamine released in the body, giving a sense of satisfaction.
    However, the other study I found ( highlighted what I found to be more positive findings such as the online version of the midas touch, where a vibrate can increase generosity much like a gentle touch in real life. Also, that having a large group of Facebook friends translated generally into having more friends in real life, and that these subjects had denser gray matter in their brains dealing with social interactions. Meaning our behavior online was reflected in our brains physical structure.
    I agree that technology indeed is reforming interactions, but I don't know that it is necessarily disintegrating society.

  3. Hmm. Individualist analysis incoming. The claims here seem to assume certain cookie-cutter human values. As a counterpoint, Thoreau is a well-known Romantic transcendentalist from around the Industrial Revolution. He wanted a full experience out of life, valuing what he called being fully awake or aware, and also sought wholesome religious experience.

    It wasn’t the problems of media/information that influenced his famous period of isolation so much as the attitudes of productivity-focused people, whether or not they thought their lives were meaningful or happy. His connections weren’t to people at all but Nature, and indeed valued the subjective over people’s industrial-era industriousness, almost the opposite of the approach one may use to argue against time-wasting and towards a different stereotype of meaningful technology-averse relationships. To some people like him, religion is also experienced through the senses, or even not through technology at all, nor is the political necessarily confused with the spiritual just because it drowns it out in the news.

  4. I really like how you guys consider the consequences of behaviors and changes due to technological "advances". You should consider reading Culture and Technology by Jennifer Daryl Slack and J. Macgregor Wise. In it they discuss the assumptions passed down to us by our cultural heritage and the consequences on how we view technology and its use. A lot of what you guys have to say is a reactionary response to a perceived degradation of society in general, and some of the common reactionary responses (such as Luddism and the "Appropriate Technology" movement) are discussed in that book. The main point of the book is that we need to analyze the consequences of technology with better perspective, which could add a lot to your ideas. There's a lot of good that comes from technological advancement, but there's a lot of bad that can come from it's misuse.