Internet grows

As technology changes, our society always seems to alter its course to accommodate it. The Internet is no different. It seems that the bigger the internet becomes, the larger the fascination becomes. Just one decade ago, the Internet was just in its beginning stages. These days, with upgrades to speed, uploading and downloading everything from information to music to movies and even games is just the norm. Almost every person has an e-mail address, but even communication has been enlarged. Popular sites such as Facebook and MySpace allow teenagers, college students, and even some adults to talk to each other about anything and everything. Although they are commonly used for expression and communication, these sites have other applications as well. “I use myspace a lot, but mostly for work,” junior Travis Crum said. “Everyone hears the stories about predators and stalkers on the internet,” Crum added. “But I think most people don’t take the threat seriously, or they just don’t care.” Sites like myspace and facebook allow people to express themselves, which is one of the most popular explanations why many people join these sites. However, this still does not answer the question of why people dedicate so much time on these sites. “I think people might spend a lot of time on these kinds of sites because they don’t think people know who they really are,” senior Rohan Agarwal said. These sites likely cause many students to bring down their stress level. Many teenagers have high expectations that surround them. These factors could be an important insight into why so many people feel the need to write about their lives. “Even though I moved to Arizona last year, I still can talk to all of my friends that I left in Ames,” junior Andy Sannier said. This ability to stay connected is possibly one of the most alluring aspects of the internet. Why would anyone want to send letters when they can send a message that reaches the person nearly instantaneously? “Not even phone conversations are as effective as the internet,” senior Wern Ong said. “When you call someone, they might not be home, but they will get a message whether they are home or not.” Many forms of entertainment have thrived on the internet. “I download tons of music from Livewire,” sophomore Emma Patterson said. Music, videos, and even comics are some of the other ways in which people can enjoy the internet. Fantasy sports have also gained incredible momentum in the past few years. One of the most popular forms of internet entertainment is online computer games. The direction this new technology is headed is unknown. Things thought to be pure fiction just a few years ago are nothing more than normal. As Internet pushes the envelope on what can be done, it is continually embraced by the masses. It seems that the majority of people have forgotten the line between want and need. Convenience has made people believe that life would be impossible without certain amenities. Whatever the next path taken is, it will eventually be as “necessary” as a telephone.