My friend Troy sent me a link to a news story from the UK this morning. The story is about The Immersion Project and a thought-provoking little video from Robbie Cooper that looks at the role digital media is playing in the lives of our kids. More specifically, the film (below), gives us a straight-on view of the faces of kids as they lock-in with full attention to the TV screen as they play violent video games.
If youth culture is like a snowball tumbling on its own down the face of a steep mountain, rapidly picking up mass, volume, and speed, then our fast-evolving digital media culture makes up a good amount of the white stuff that the culture's picking up as it tumbles down the hill. In recent youth culture seminars I've found myself reminding people that seven years ago we wouldn't be talking about things like Facebook, social networking, Twitter, micro-blogging, etc. Indeed, the world is changing and changing fast. Now, all this stuff is pervasive. We have to figure out where it's come from, what needs it's feeding, and what it's doing to us and how we are choosing to live in the world. It's effect is not nuetral, and our faith must inform both our response to its existence and the manner in which we choose to employ it in our everyday lives. These are serious matters that are just starting to be discussed with any sort of seriousness.
I don't know about you, but looking into the faces of these kids and hearing their comments. . . . well. . . . it's somewhat sobering. This isn't research. It's real life. Take a look and tell me what you see.