No matter where I go, my phone is by my side. My phone gets texts, e-mails, calls, tweets, Facebook messages, Instagram Dm’s, GroupME messages, and Amber alerts. That’s uncomfortable. At any given moment in time, anybody in the world who knows me through social media or real life can make my phone vibrate in an effort to speak to me. This is the “Always On” lifestyle.
Danah Boyd makes the point that just because she’s “Always On,” it doesn’t mean she’s accessible. Just because you contact her, she doesn’t have to answer. I feel the same way, but many others do not. If you send somebody a text and they don’t answer, you feel slighted. If I ignore somebody’s call, they’re going to be upset. That’s the way the “Always On” lifestyle works. It’s impossible to plug out nowadays, because everybody expects you to be accessible. I have went through my phone breaking several times, and those have been the most peaceful times of my life. Did not having a phone have a downfall? Sure. But not having to answer anybody’s texts or calls was a better feeling. The “Always On” lifestyle has its benefits, but the stress it causes may not be worth the reward.