HUMAN CONNECTION :TRACTION IN THE VIRTUAL WORLD.
On the 29th of March 2020, as I got ready to go to bed, I took some time to think about the HUMAN CONNECTION. As social creatures, the human connection has always been an integral part of our existence. Matter of fact, most of our activities are dictated by human connection. From business transactions to governance. From large social gatherings like concerts to just a simple date for two love birds, the human connection has never been overly important.
With the Corona Virus taking its toll on the world, governments and political regimes are ordering curfews and even lockdowns in many countries. These Social distancing policies are all In a bid to control the spread of the novel Corona Virus. This has led to a shift in the traffic of activities from the PHYSICAL world to the VIRTUAL world. Yes, the physical and virtual worlds. In the book, THE NEW DIGITAL AGE, Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen divide human existence into two, the physical and virtual worlds.
The physical world is the world as most of us know it. The world that is tangible, the one that we can see and feel. The virtual world on the other hand, is the world that is made possible by mainly through the largest experiment involving arnachy in history,the INTERNET. The internet is among the few things humans have built that they don't truly understand. What began as a means of electronic information transmission has transformed into an omnipresent and endlessly multi-faceted outlet for human energy.
The vast majority of us have increasingly found ourselves living, workingand being governed in these two worlds at once. In these turbulent times in particular we are finding solace and ways to keep the human connection in the virtual. This has become the space that is safe for us. The COVID 19 virus cannot be spread as we interact in this virtual space. Even the laws of the physical world don't work here. The genius of Newton's laws of motion would be watered down to near-useless in this space. This is a world where introverts can exponentially thrive. A place where the misfits and the weirdos can thrive without question. It is a space that to a large extent does not take into considerations what you have achieved in the physical world.
One of our greatest attributes as human is our ability to endure, adapt then overcome. Limits in physical interactions have led us straight into the virtual world. There are some outstanding cases.The American artist Jason Derulo threw a concert on the famous social networking platform TIK-TOK and attracted over 2 million viewers. The legendary pop icon, Elton John in conjunction with I-heart radio organized a live virtual concert and attracted millions of viewership . Our beloved Kenyan artists have not been left behind. Sautisol graced our screens through their Instagram concert. Not forgetting DJ Joe Mfalme.
Universities and learning institutions have also taken classes online while others are just using digital content. Virtual learning platforms have also observed a surge in numbers as students scramble to stay on top of their books.
Companies trying to maintain productivity have been ordering employees to work from home with devices forming the interface and interaction point amongst working teams. As a result, we have seen more virtual conferencing tools such as Zoom,Skype, Slack, Gotomeeting and Ring central enjoying a spike in the number of users. Zoom has even become the third most downloaded application on playstore.
All this is besides the many "challenges" that are setting tik-tok, Instagram and other video sharing platforms ablaze.
There is something reassuring about knowing that friends and family are just a phone tap away. Developments in the virtual world are making life easier in these times. Although we are physically separated, we have never been more virtually connected.
Compiled by: Amos Bungei