Maria Chimes In: Episode 2 – Kathryn Tam
Killing The Breeze presents Episode 2 of Maria Chimes In . Last week, Maria spoke with Brooklyn Based artist Rina Prel. This week Maria sits down with fellow NYU alum and avid social media user Kathryn Tam to talk about the age of social media.
Foresight in the Age of Social Media
The conversation begins with an introduction from Tam regarding her initial use of the social networking site Facebook — the colossal platform for ‘connectivity,’ as dubbed by CEO Mark Zuckerberg. This segment details the state of the age of social media and its varying consequences on younger generations, pointing to acclaimed novelist Zadie Smith for insight.
Tam recounts how her initial relationship with Facebook was relatively benign, just an additional way to reach friends on a more consistent basis and keep track of each other’s lives. As Facebook itself evolved, additional features, such as the ability to ‘like’ a friend’s post gave way to what Tam describes as the “darker side” to social media. She described the feeling of satisfaction derived from multiple ‘like’ notifications, stating that they were definitely “confidence boosters.” In the cyber sphere, this creates a strange dynamic between what is real and what edited images attempt to portray — in Tam’s words, “cropping out the sadness.”
The conversation turns to the inability to, once and for all, separate one’s self from an estranged relationship. Our connectivity forsakes privacy and never allows us to be fully removed from the people we once knew. We must question how this affects our emotional well-being. If we cannot part ways with our pasts, how can we ever begin to move forward? Start again?
In essence, we have reduced the human qualities that make us individuals to swipes on Tinder and likes on Facebook. Tam discusses her concerns for the over-saturated world of connectivity that will ultimately raise her future daughter. We reveled in the memories of having to pick up the phone, having to remember the phone numbers of our friends, and hearing the voices of those we cherished — instead of being disguised behind a screen.
Maria Chimes In: Episode 3 – From Here To There And Back