Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Hold your tongues

PDA in the Digital Age

by Julie at The Corner with a View
Trista at Not a Minx, a Moron, or a Parasite will be sitting out this week.
"Hold your tongues" by Elizabeth at Startling the Day

The "Bright Maidens" were originally three from the oft-mentioned, widely-speculated upon demographic of young, twenty-something Catholic women. Now, we all take up the cross to dispel the myths and misconceptions. Welcome!

We've all clicked through more Facebook photo albums than we care to admit.

Perhaps you're more disciplined than I am, but I remember when Facebook first allowed Photo Albums back in the fall of 2005 and I stayed up until 3:00 in the morning, clicking through random photos. What a stalker I "was."

Even today, though the nuance of Facebook and photo albums has worn thin, I find myself perusing a few photo albums of people I barely know. Call me creepy, but I say Facebook has opened a whole new scope for amateur sociology and I eat it up. The colors, the creative Halloween costumes, the photos of places I wish I could go, happy wedding and baby photos of those I haven't seen in years. I just can't get enough of the pictures!

One sure way to get me to click away, especially when I was lovesick and single, was when a Facebook friend posts a MySpace-style photo of a smoochfest from an arm's length away. Yup, a split-second look at two (usually young and freshly dating) folks exchanging a kiss just seems out of place in my admittedly liberal dose of photo perusing.

Many couples post pictures of kiss exchanges between them and their new spouses in their wedding photos and these are quite touching. They seem like moments of ecstasy, captured by someone invited or hired to document the day.

I'm not writing to condemn others for the random kissing photo in our digitized world. Some are simply more comfortable with flaunting their physical love for their significant other than I am.

The Facebook generation has fewer inhibitions to their privacy and the camp seems to be split: is Facebook PDA better, worse, or the same as in-person PDA? Perhaps we shouldn't be looking at photos of our friends if we're not prepared to see their tongues. Or perhaps we should think about why we're posting a play-by-play of our tonsil hockey on Facebook.

Most people posting these photos are probably not boiling down their entire relationship to one kissy photo, but that's one of the impressions it gives: This is how we love each other, isn't it cute? I would suggest they consider the potential pain of "detaging" or deleting those photos if the relationship were to end, knowing that they can neither "detag" nor delete the image from onlookers' eyes and minds.

Just because you're on the Internet and you cannot physically see other people does not mean the rest of the world ceases to exist. We're all humans out here and those who tend to interact with more people through the Interwebs would do well to remember that.


Katie@NFP and Me said...

Agreed! The kissing pictures are just too much, especially as a profile picture (or maybe I'm just being nit picky.) If there's one or two quick peck pictures in an album every once in a while I can live with that, I don't have to see that. But if it's your profile picture, I'm forced to look at it every time you update or I try to interact with you.

Ok, forced may be a bit harsh but I still don't like them. :)

The Catholic Couponer said...

Very true! I'm not sure if the pictures or the "baby i love you so much can't wait to see you after work!" comments on the walls sometimes they are in the same ROOM writing on the walls...really people!

Emily @ Day in the Life said...

Oh hey. we have so many of the same points. Gahh I hate kissy pictures. So much. Gahhh. I agree with Katie haha.
Also, those pictures made me giggle :)

Kendra said...

I can tell you from experience that I was so glad my one ex boyfriend and I didn't have a single kissing picture on facebook. Although I did go through and detag myself from every picture we appeared in together, it helped a ton that there weren't any over the top pictures online to worry about. I think this is an extension of the whole "guarding your heart" theme that we've talked about in previous posts. Not going all out online in terms of overly affectionate pictures can really save your heart a lot of grief if the relationship fizzles.

Rae said...

Your concluding paragraphs are so crucial and a part of a much larger issue of internet interactions that I can't even begin to wrap my mind around! One of the great temptations of social media is the chance to give others an entirely unrealistic picture (no pun intended) of ourselves and our relationships. And I think that we all fall into this in some way or another without even trying.

But as for the excessive kissy pictures... maybe just give your friends a few years to grow up more. ;-)

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