TECHNO MODERATION

Even technology stops for the eclipse

Commentary

Luis Almeida
Posted 8/24/17

We are 15 minutes away from the total eclipse here at the Lee University campus and let me share something with you: What an awesome experience this is!

What is as awesome to witness are hundreds …

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TECHNO MODERATION

Even technology stops for the eclipse

Commentary

Posted

We are 15 minutes away from the total eclipse here at the Lee University campus and let me share something with you: What an awesome experience this is!

What is as awesome to witness are hundreds of college students and dozens of couples having fun and holding hands and walking together with special eclipse filters instead of perishable machinery in their fingertips.

There are kids playing together and smiling at one another. I see interpersonal conversations everywhere on campus, regardless of gender, nationality or religious affiliation. It seems that everything stops for the eclipse to pass by, even technology!

I wish that we had more total eclipses here in Southeast Tennessee. What a Lord’s blessing we are experiencing today.

It is now 2:19 p.m. There are more people coming and taking a seat in front of the Communication Arts building on the south part of our campus.

Celebrate!

I see no smartphones in their hands. I see, however, a number of college kids playing frisbee and many old-timers walking around and enjoying their Monday afternoon. They’re now starting to stop. No wonder, since it is 2:26 p.m., and there soon will be wonder. They are now putting their eclipse glasses on and waiting tirelessly to see this rare event of God. With things being fair, not everybody has ISO glasses. Some are chatting and holding their smartphones in their hands, but today they are the minority. Some are trying to take a photo against the sun, but are having a difficult time due to its brightness.

One thing is for sure. It seems to me that many families and professionals took the day off to enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime outdoors experience with their children. I am glad — putting smartphones away once in a while is a good thing. As I always say, “We need to use technology, but in moderation.”

It is evident to me that people are using their smartphones much less today. What a wonderful place, Cleveland, Tennessee. It is now 2:30 p.m.!

Holy cow! It looks like a summer evening in the middle of the day. I hear screams on my left and celebrations on my right. I hear whistling and my wife saying, “Luis! Luis! Look at the sun. It is safe now!”

I did.

The eclipse is here! What an amazing experience!

I couldn't resist but to speak with some local residents who decided to come to Lee University to watch the eclipse.

Brad and Deiley Wilson were among the people who I had the privilege to speak with. A very nice couple, I must add, they both shared two very interesting insights about the eclipse and technology.

Attorney Brad Wilson shared, “If it wasn’t for the eclipse, I would be at work right now. I would definitely be in front of my computer screen.” His wife, Deiley, adds, “If it wasn’t because of the eclipse, I would be in front of the computer for eight to 10 hours today.”

I had also the opportunity to speak with Ernesto Perez about the eclipse and technology. He kindly shared the following with me when I asked him about his interactions with his smartphone today.

He shared, “Today, I am using my smartphone less since our family is trying to enjoy the eclipse experience.”

How cool, I say. The eclipse today has served as a catalyst for escaping the machine!

Maybe we should ask the Lord to give us one eclipse a week so that folks have a better chance to get away from their computerized devices and enjoy their lives with their loved ones even more.

What a blessing it was to experience such an event. It is now 2:34 p.m. and the sun is back again. The light has resumed, and life moves on.

These last 15 minutes have been unforgettable.

———

(About the writer: Dr. Luis C. Almeida is an associate professor of communication at Lee University and TEDx speaker. He has been nationally featured for his work in leadership and technology by the Wall Street Journal, ABC-Jackson, TEDxPhoenixville, Pittsburgh Tribune Review, Voice of America and the Indiana Gazette. Internationally, Dr. “A” has been featured in several outlets, including the prestigious O Globo newspaper and Radio CBN. He is the author of the book “Becoming a Brand: The Rise of Technomoderation,” and a devoted Christian. He can be reached via his website at luiscalmeida.info.)

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