Are People Anti-Social on Buses because of Technology?

Photo by Kelsey Shockey '14
The bus is very quiet. Only a few whispers can be heard, and everyone is staring out of the window. The bottom of the seats are almost completely covered with sticky gum that was purposefully put there instead of the garbage. The only noise you can hear is the engine of the bus whirring and the wheels scratching your ears as the bus comes to a sudden stop.

This is my first time this year going on a bus, and the fact that no one is talking is very shocking. Back when I was in first and second grade, the only years of my life that I ever took the bus, the bus rides to and from school were very loud. Different conversations would fly across the bus like a Frisbee thrown back and forth. The talking would never end. This is why I thought it was so shocking when I heard nothing.

“When people are on the bus, they talk, text and listen to their iPods. I also talk, text, and listen to my iPod. I don’t really care if people listen to their iPods while talking to them because I can tell whether they are actively part of the conversation,” Lea Sellon ’14 said.

As I had to move my heavy bag for someone to get by, I thought about how back in the old days or even just a few years ago, there wasn’t as much technology as we have today. People didn’t have the technology that we desperately need in order to have the latest “in” things.

However, after the bus ride, I realized that not only has technology changed, but the way people socialize with one another has too.

Before all of this technology was invented, people would go on the bus and either do homework, eat, or talk to their friends. They didn’t have things with which to entertain themselves, so they had to figure out what to do. But now since we have so much to use to occupy ourselves, people do not interact with each other.

“ Back in the late 90’s, it was just as equally anti-social as it is now. I always did homework or stare at the window because I was tired,” chorus teacher Justin Miller, who graduated Staples in  ’01, said.

Say if you were taking to your friend and instead of them listening to you, they were listening to their iPods and they had no idea what you were saying. This is an act of not caring about what you had to say. They are so busy with technology like iPods, cell phones, and other devises that they do not even bother to talk or express themselves.

“People always listen to their iPods or text on their cell phones. If I try to talk to someone and they are listening to their iPod, it feels cold and it feels rude, but it doesn’t hurt my feelings. There is almost no noise because everything is doing something.” Matt Walton ’14 said.