In my everyday life I use all sorts of media, they range from cable television, Internet, radio, and the newspaper. For myself media, is the form and technology I use to receive and communicate information. The different forms of media I was trying to avoid were cable television, the internet and radio. I figured if I could avoid those things I would be doing well in avoiding most obvious forms of mass media. What I realized as I began this whole experience this whole experience is that the mass media is an important if not the most important part of my everyday life. I use it for almost everything I do and it surrounds me.
On my first day of avoiding the media, which was on a Saturday, my plan going into was not check my e-mail, not watch television and not listen to the radio. This was not as easy as I thought, that morning when I woke up my first instinct was to check my e-mail. After I couldn't do that I felt all this anxiety that I was missing out on something. But I went without, and was able to get to work without reading the newspaper or listening to the radio.
It was easy for me to avoid media at work because I work at Enterprise Rent-A-Car and all I do there is check people into cars and drive around the city all day. If I don't turn on the radio when I'm driving cars then I pretty much avoid most media. The only problem I had at work is when I would be talking to some customers and they would be talking about things they heard in the news, sports etc... and I couldn't really participate in the conversation. So I got off work at about one o'clock and went home.
I had no idea what to do, I normally get home watch some television and then get on the internet. The only thing that I could think to do was go and rent a movie. So that's what I did and it worked beautifully, I watched the movie "Man on Fire" with Denzel Washington (it is actually a very good movie). When I finished watching that my roommates insisted on watching MTV (music television if you didn't know). I did catch a glimpse of that was happening in the world of music (oops). Realizing that I was straying I decided to go and get another movie from the video store.
I got the movie The Last Samurai with Tom Cruise and watched it, which killed another couple of hours out of my day of avoiding media. So finally it was 7 pm and I had been fairly successful in avoiding most media and I only had a couple of hours till I could go out to the bars with my friends and then go to bed. For those last couple of house I decided to spin some records to kill time. It's the only other thing that I do that does require me to access other forms of mass media. I fortunately made it through my day and out to the bars, I then came home and went to bed. On my second day, which on a weekday, I had a slightly easier day of avoiding media due to the fact that I had to work all day.
So I woke up at 7 am and checked my e-mail out of habit. Shortly after doing that I realized that I was not supposed to do that (oops). Got to work at 8 am and started my day. It was pretty easy to avoid media all I had to do is not listen to the radio. In the middle of the day I actually was at lunch and caught a glimpse of television. I went back to work around 2 pm and finished my day around 5 pm.
I remember when I got home from work I really wanted this media avoidance to be over. I really wanted to watch television and check my e-mail. After playing records for a little while I decided the best thing to do was to go to the video store and rent yet another couple of movies. I watched my movies and then called it a night I could wait wake up and be able to watch television or surf the web.
Not being able to do everyday things such as watch television, access the Internet, read the newspaper, or listen to the radio is nearly impossible. It seems that we as a society are dependent on such things. It's the way that our society communicates. I could function normally or do any of the things that I do in my everyday life.
Most of my communications with people is through email and IM. Without the Internet my life is pretty much at a stand still. I also didn't realize how much time I kill during the day just watching television. I don't think on the weekends I had as much trouble as I did during the week. My weekdays are routine and the radio is how I listen to the news and figure out what's going on in the world. When I had slipped up and watched television, I felt like I was part of the world.
I think that mass media make us feel like we are part of society and never want to avoid it ever again.