Thursday, June 5, 2014

Is Emma Thompson Wrong About Social Media?

 Oscar winner shares unsavoury thoughts on social media

Hollywood actress Emma Thompson revealed in an interview with Vanity Fair that social media is killing a generation. She clearly has very strong views on the most popular way to communicate, but is she right in her extreme opinion?

social media influence on movies

The two-time Oscar winner says that she would “rather have root canal treatment for the rest of my life than join Twitter,” and would prefer “putting my head in the toilet and flushing it repeatedly” to Googling herself.

The 55-year-old actress later reveals that social media is destructive to society as a whole: “Listen, I’d rather have root canal treatment FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE than join Twitter. That’s not my scene at all. I can’t bear the thought of being connected all the time. God knows what it’s doing to us. I hope that everyone does realise that we are all just one giant human experiment at the moment. We are just a great big bunch of little gerbils on wheels.”

Thompson shares her opinion with a lot of people despite the increasing popularity, and it is clear that she is a non user of such networks. It makes her argument a difficult one to follow in a sense, as she has no experience as to what social media can achieve in society.

To a degree, she is right, and far too many people are allowing social media to dictate their lives, but where Thompson blames social media itself, the real blame lies at the individuals door. It is all about consumption, and like anything, if you consume too much, you will see the negative impact as opposed to the benefits.

Thompson’s attitude is one of someone who does not posses the education in that specific field also, and if she had done her research instead of launching an attack from the off, then she would see the picture in a more rounded fashion. Recent campaigns on Twitter including the Stephen Sutton story and the search for Gareth Huntley show that there is an intelligent community online who strive to help others, whilst utilising the tools given to prosper for themselves also. With these possibilities in place, why would anyone bypass such a tool?

social media influence on movies

Emma Thompson cannot see past the obsessive folk who refuse to put their phone down, and struggle engaging in any type of dialogue which doesn't include a device or a hashtag. What she doesn't see is the positive things that are born out of social media campaigns, and also how social media helps the film industry. With the help of networking platforms, the film industry has pushed marketing to a new level, and through this cinema has been born again. Ironically Thompson is a part of the film industry that sees the benefits out of social media, and she starred in a film for Disney, who also launched one of the biggest social media campaigns ever for their successful animated movie Frozen.

Of course, everyone is entitled to their opinion, and Thompson has never held back when expressing hers, one can only feel that she has gone in too hard in this social media argument, and she has missed some vital points when developing her argument. Social media is popular for a very good reason, and that reason is because it helps people from all over the globe connect with each other. In a time where cultural differences are high, social media could be that form of communication that allows different groups to respect one another, and the last thing we all need is an A lister shouting negative, uncooked arguments about a tool so important for the development of society.


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