Day 78: How the Internet enables intimacy

Modern technology has led to the democratisation of intimacy, at least according to Stefana Broadbent. 

Since the birth of modern bureaucracy 150 years ago, people have been thrust into a cycle of order and routine where most workplaces are far from the social and home environment. Now we have instant messaging, Facebook, Twitter and texting to keep in touch more inconspicuously. And everyone is at it, it seems. Peak time for personal emails is 11am, 75% of workers make private calls on their mobiles during work hours while 100% surveyed by Broadbent sent text messages. 

Broadbent studied dozens of people and asked them to bring the person who they spoke to most during the day. There was the baker who called his wife every morning at 8am when she was starting her day, or the factory worker who rang his girlfriend at 11pm to say goodnight nightly. For each of these stories, a company somewhere is blocking access to Facebook or instant messaging. According to Broadbent, companies should not have the right to decide who should be isolated or demand attention. This, in her view, is a simple blocking of intimacy. 


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