Last week Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, claimed that social network sites (FaceBook amongst them), text-messaging and e-mails were undermining community life.
Part of me understands where he is coming from. After all Niece #1, still staying with us, seems to prefer telling anyone and everyone of her movements (' am so hungry any 1 wanna cum make me tea'')* or sitting doing all manner of quizzes ('Are you a tease?' and 'How dirty is your mind?' to name but two of them) on FaceBook rather then communicate with Hubby and I. But, and I never dreamt I'd be saying this, it also has it's plus sides.
For one thing, it's given my nurturing side an outlet since I discovered FarmVille where I now have rabbits, sheep, cows and pigs to 'look' after. Then, almost daily, it has allowed a certain Swedish Priest (well known to quite a few of us for his contribution on our blogs) to send me at least one hug and sometimes flowers - ok, so they are only virtual ones but they still make me smile. And thirdly, it has allowed a relative who we lost touch with almost 8 years ago to get in touch again. Yes, we could all argue how awful it is that family loose touch like this but it happens - and isn't it nice when these so called social net-working sites allow us the means to get together again?
* Personally, and call me old fashioned if you like, but, it is this lazy, not to mention incorrect, use of the language that concerns me more. What do you think?