As I have said on this site before, I am afraid of many things – change, hubris & colossal squid just to name a few. But I am proud to say there is one thing I am not afraid of. (aside from ending sentences in a preposition).
That’s right, the big bad internet does not scare me. I browse like a Beverly Hills housewife at the mall. I open 20 tabs at a time, constantly looking for something new. I click with reckless abandon.
Not one bead of sweat drips down my forehead as I walk the tightrope of knowing when to install updates or when not to install updates.
You are probably thinking, big deal. As comedian Christ Rock might say, you’re not supposed to fear the internet, what do you want a cookie?
But you’d be surprised how many people are afraid of the internet. I’ve spoken with a handful of people in the last month you are very uneasy with the World Wide Web.
They are afraid to go to a new website without using a Yahoo search first. They think every email is out to steal their identity. Just hearing the words, “open a new window in your browser,” makes giant butterflies dance around in their stomach.
Their radar is always on high alert and, although I don’t think they would admit it, they act like they might break the internet.
Why fear something that is so magical? At first, I thought this was silly.
But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that this behavior is actually quite common. Only it happens somewhere else…
These folks I referenced above treat the internet like many of us treat our everyday lives. Not wanting to go to a new website without going through Yahoo is the same as taking the same route to work everyday. Thinking every email is trying to steal your identity is the same as thinking every new person we meet is out to get us.
We eat the same thing for lunch everyday and ignore making eye contact with strangers on a plane because we fear change. We are comfortable with our routine and, although we may not admit it, deep down we afraid that trying something new might make the whole system crash.
Seems silly to fear something so magical. Yet we (myself included) still do.