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Aaron Sorkin: Facebook Is "Pushing Us Farther Apart" (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 29th 2010 1:27PM
Aaron Sorkin, 'The View'No one can dispute the size and power of the Facebook movement online. What is in dispute, perhaps, is its impact on us. While most people would agree that its intention was to allow us to be even more connected with our friends, some would disagree.

While talking about 'The Social Network,' his movie about Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg, on 'The View' (Weekdays, Syndicated on ABC), Barbara Walters asked Aaron Sorkin what he thinks "Facebook has done to people's lives."

While he thinks Zuckerberg had the best intentions when creating the application; to bring people closer together; Sorkin believes it has done the exact opposite. "I think that socializing on the Internet is to socializing what reality TV is to reality," he argued.

It's a compelling statement, but we wonder if the same arguments weren't made about the telephone or email when they were still new. Sure, technologically-enhanced social interactions are no substitute for face-to-face communication, but these tools have done wonders in allowing people to stay in touch.

Just a generation or two ago, when a friend moved away, we more than likely would fall out of touch with that person, despite our best intentions. With Facebook, we're always connected, whether we are actively trying to be or not. As long as your network of friends is updating and communicating, they are still a part of your life.

It's when we start to use it in place of contact with even our nearby friends and relatives that it can become unhealthy, but that's more a problem of the user than the application. This is more than likely what Sorkin was getting at, but it's important to emphasize that it's not the tool that is inherently the problem.

Later, taking things in a gentler direction, Sherri Shepherd asked Sorkin about reports that he showered up to six and eight times a day while writing. "Because we don't have typewriters anymore," he explained. "You don't have the satisfaction of ripping the paper out of the typewriter, curling it up and throwing it in the garbage can." As a substitute, Sorkin takes a shower to re-energize himself and changes his clothes to give himself a fresh start. There are certainly worse things he can do to refuel his creative juices. At least he's clean for when he's meeting his friends face-to-face.

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John From Raleigh

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September 29 2010 at 7:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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