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Τετάρτη, 24 Ιουλίου, 2024
ΑρχικήEnglish EditionWhat is Constant Connectivity? Part I

What is Constant Connectivity? Part I


By Sofia Machaira,

Picture this: a new day rises, another day at work begins. The many downsides behind the promise of flexible working hours become rapidly apparent. At the end of the shift, your phone may be flooding with messages. Updates from friends and family, news, and memes. Until the late hours of the night, there seems to be an underlying expectation for every email, every text, and every call to be replied to. Putting an electronic device out of reach is looked down upon, like a form of punishment. The current reality of this “24/7” availability provided by the internet leads to constant connectivity.

First things first, is there a stricter definition of this phrase? Usually, this term is used to assert business etiquette. As such, it refers to employees’ continuing availability and the aforementioned “24/7” connectedness to the company, through work-related communication tools, during both work and non-work hours. Nonetheless, constant connectivity does not need to be studied exclusively through one specific and limited perspective!

Through the lens of personal research, observations, and experiences, there is a great number of benefits to constant connectivity, due to social media’s current landscape. Still, it is important to point out that individual experiences can vary greatly. The most obvious pro is the ability to always remain in the loop and keep in touch with people, no matter their location or time zone. Communication is achieved faster and easier than ever before. Some also attempt to train AI for tasks such as automating text responses. At the same time, there are thousands upon thousands of communities to find, learn about, and fit in. It can help combat loneliness, but only to an extent, as it heavily differs from person to person. There is always the possibility of sharing an opinion in any media format and concerning literally any subject. However, the experience of uploading content must be handled with care, and unwanted criticism is often unavoidable. Additionally, unlimited resources exist to read and grow a whole new skill set out of.

Image Rights: FREEP!K

In the post-covid era, a lot of organizations have successfully adapted and now allow for hybrid or remote work. During quarantine, it was necessary to begin the process of digitization, since working in the office space was, for many, restricted. And so, the horizon of possibilities has broadened. People from different cities or countries are eligible to be hired and by-pass the need for an office setting thanks to constant connectivity. The way they do it is widely known; through instant messages, emails, telephone calls, online meetings, and groups or servers. Countless applications have risen into popularity, like Zoom, WebEx Meet, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, Discord, and Slack. Many more exist (remember Skype?) and many more will follow. Plus, with the use of artificial intelligence software, language barriers are slowly breaking as well. But, without a doubt, such a structure is not doable for every industry sector.

To reiterate, this is not a “one size fits all” type of situation; everything should be taken with a grain of salt. There are two sides to every coin, and both should be heard in order to draw conclusions. Upon analysis, theoretical information combined with hands-on experience will provide further insight. Thus, as expected, the next part will place emphasis on the negative side of the spectrum.


References
  • Understanding constant connectivity to work: How and for whom is constant connectivity related to employee well-being? ELSEVIER. Available here

  • Mental Health in the Digital Age: Navigating the Challenges of Constant Connectivity. Linked In. Available here

  • What are some potential psychological benefits and drawbacks of the growing trend of constant connectivity through social media and digital devices? Quora. Available here


TA ΤΕΛΕΥΤΑΙΑ ΑΡΘΡΑ

Sophia Machaira
Sophia Machaira
Born and raised in Athens in 2002, studies at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, department of Informatics and Telecommunications. Adores writing free-verse poetry, fluent in English and hopes to work in web design.