For many people, taking photos, if not hundreds or thousands, is now a very important part of life. We want to take every detail and post it on social media. But how does this affect our true memories of the past? Psychological research on the subject is not enough so far. But we know a few things. We use smartphones and new technologies as memory stores. Actually, this is nothing new. People have always used external devices when acquiring and storing information.
Today, we tend to keep very little in our memory. We rely heavily on our storage devices. Most personal events are usually recorded on mobile phones. Instead of remembering what we eat at a wedding, we look and find wedding photos. This has serious consequences.
When we choose to take pictures instead of living the moment, we completely change the trace left by the event. In order for memory to work and develop well, it must be used regularly. There are many studies showing the importance of memory enhancement practice. Memory is imperative for learning and must be constantly improved. There are some studies showing that including almost all information and memories in external storage devices can hinder the ability to remember.
Photos can help people remember in some cases, while the quality of memories can limit. One study showed that while photos help people remember what they saw during an event, they couldn’t remember what was said.
Another issue is that selfies (selfie) reveal a lack of self-confidence. Selfie photos are generally planned poses, unnatural. Also, shaping the face with unnatural facial expressions such as pretentious smiles, sensual faces, funny faces or aggressive gestures reflects a narcissistic tendency. In fact, most of the photos shared on social media do not really reflect who we are, they reflect what we want to show to others. If we trust too many photos while remembering our past, we can create a distorted self-identity based on the image we want to introduce to others.
So our obsession with taking pictures can cause both memory loss and annoying identity discrepancies. We need to think about how technology has changed our behavior and lifestyle. As long as we are aware of the risks, we can probably reduce the harmful effects.
Source: The Conversation