Opinion: ‘Technology… a double-edged sword’


Ioanna Tsompanellis

Technology has been an asset for many during the pandemic, being used as a source for information and a way to contact family members. However, for many, it has also created a reliance on electronic devices.

Sarah Shapiro, Staff Editor

Technology has been a double-edged sword in my experience. 

When the pandemic started almost two years ago, it was as if my mind flipped a switch. 

One second I was out all the time, working hard, and hanging out with my friends; and the next, I was on electronics without limitations. All of a sudden I was swept into quarantine, closed off from the rest of the world. So, I turned to electronics. 

Day after day, I clicked on the YouTube app on my phone or plopped down on the couch in my basement to watch Netflix and sat there in a trance wasting away my hours, my days, and even my months. 

From these experiences, I began to view electronics as bad, like my enemy.

Then, I was told that I tested positive for the coronavirus. 

My dad walked into my room, sat down, and shared the news. I was upset not only because I was worried about who I may have affected, but also because I realized I would be cut off from the world and would force myself to go down the same rabbit hole of technology, absorbed in those storylines rather than my actual life. 

I expected technology to be my enemy throughout the week, but it wasn’t. Instead, I learned how to use it in my favor. 

Rather than letting myself be locked out from the world, absorbed in the experience of being quarantined in my room, I called my friends and family over Snapchat and Google Meet, I logged into my classes, and I texted my sister across the country. 

I found ways for technology to help me, to keep me connected to the people and things I might have lost contact with that week. 

Now, I question what my life would have looked like had I not had access to the news outlets in the beginning of the pandemic. They gave me and many others throughout the world instant updates on the virus spreading across the country in the past few years.

To put things in perspective, Zoom was created in 2011, Skype was created in 2003, and the mobile phone was created only 40 years ago. If this pandemic had taken place 40 plus years ago, our situation would have been drastically different.

In April, the Pew Research Center conducted a survey and found that 53% of U.S. adults considered the internet essential during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Because of recent developments in technology, we have been given the luxury of accessing programs that allow us to continue our daily life a safe distance away from others. 

These past few years I have despised technology, as I felt that it took apart my life piece by piece. And although that thought hasn’t been totally eradicated, I am beginning to see the other side: the side of technology that feeds positivity. 

That is the side I want to focus on.