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Thread: Social distancing -- The words and the actions

  1. #1

    Social distancing -- The words and the actions

    Before jumping on my case hear me out.

    Social contact is exceptionally important in times like these since humans are social animals. My quibble is with the term "social distancing", not the concept of keeping people PHYSICALLY apart. We have multiple technologies to allow safe social interaction: land line phones, cell phones, Skype, other computer based audio/video, and of course internet forums and email. Perhaps we need to rebadge the concept as "Physical Distancing." It is more accurate and just might get some of the scoffers aboard. Now more than ever it is important to encourage social interaction to maintain everyone's mental health.
    Last edited by Jim Becker; 03-30-2020 at 7:20 PM.
    Dave Anderson
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    Chester, NH

  2. #2
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    You are, of course, correct. Folks go nuts (a technical term) without social contact. Without physical contact they (we) get unhappy. Nuts is much worse. -Howard

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    This perspective on semantic terminology has been going on all weekend and while its somewhat technically correct either term is pretty much self explanatory given the context of the current situation. Of course without Corona social distancing could be seen as implying we are all suppose to become Golum from lord of the rings. Pretty basic contextual deduction makes it clear what the "term" is meant to imply.

    Given that most people now would say they hang out with someone "socially", or they go out for a drink "socially", or they gather around a barbeque or bonfire "socially", its pretty much plain as day with regards to its intent in the given context.

    I pretty much loathe our current leadership but when I watch one of these press conferences I honestly and truly feel bad for people I simply dont like and dont agree with politically. To be expected to make every single statement you make in a pre-planned, quick report, or interview statement, is simply unrealistic for anyone other than a robot. Even with a bunch of richly compensated handlers and speech writers, you your never going to not make statements that couldnt have been made in a better way.

    Distancing, whether it be social, physical, proximatal, choose your term.

    Virtually every individual I speak with that has either worked remotely or has moved from an office space to now working remotely, is MORE social than they ever have been before. Conversations that use to be 15 email back-and-forths are now a Zoom, skype, facetime, video call. My SO is directly in this world. Someone who sat in her home office all day paper shuffling (but digital bits instead of paper) and is now having group skype/zoom/etc calls with numerous people all looking into each others eyes (via screen time), laughing, talking, supporting each other, and what not.

    I think this argument about the term "social" is one of those PC (cant believe I as a liberal am complaining about a PC term) arguments that isnt taking into consideration the context of the scenario.

    I dont see a lot of hermit level hunkering down in any of the conversations I have with customers and vendors across the country that would speak to people thinking these orders mean not being social.
    Last edited by Mark Bolton; 03-30-2020 at 1:34 PM.
    Sometimes I just want to look at pretty pictures,... Thats when I go to the Turners Forum

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    I agree. But Professor Dr. SWMBO and I talked about this the other day...she's an epidemiologist and teaches the same to doctoral and masters candidates in the public health sector. The term "social distancing" that's being widely used comes from how the epi community talks about controlling spread of disease and is accurate in that context. But for the rest of us, it would have been nicer to have language that emphasised the physical separation without the "social" separation. We are indeed fortunate to live in a time where technology at least affords us the opportunity to "instantly" interact like this with friends, family and even strangers to satisfy our inherent need to socialize as human beings.
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    The term 'social distancing' has bothered me right from the start. Socializing is now more important than ever, and we have the technology that makes it easy.

    We haven't seen our kids or grandchildren for 2 weeks, which is driving me crazy. but every couple of days we do have a facetime session with each of them & it provides a much needed lift. Friday night my wife & I put on costume hats & called it 'Fancy Friday'. They thought we're weird, but that's nothing new & a great time was had.

  6. #6
    Our family participated in a multi-point zoom conference call yesterday. The call was very clear as were the videos of each participant. We plan to do more of this as this situation continues.
    Lee Schierer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Pratt View Post
    The term 'social distancing' has bothered me right from the start. Socializing is now more important than ever, and we have the technology that makes it easy.

    We haven't seen our kids or grandchildren for 2 weeks, which is driving me crazy. but every couple of days we do have a facetime session with each of them & it provides a much needed lift. Friday night my wife & I put on costume hats & called it 'Fancy Friday'. They thought we're weird, but that's nothing new & a great time was had.
    My SO's folks are in-sane-level-grandparents.. like scary in-sane. Especially her mom, and thats one of the worst parts about this whole thing. It will likely mean months of zero contact as her mom (the grandmother) is in the danger zone for being infected. It sucks for sure. I guess the bonus is technology smooths the bumps. If we were 40-50 years ago I guess the bug never would have made it here, but if it came from here word would have taken WAY longer to get out, and the spread would likely have been several hundred fold worse.

    There's always a bright side. Terminology never bothers me. No one every gets anything like that right.
    Sometimes I just want to look at pretty pictures,... Thats when I go to the Turners Forum

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Bolton View Post
    Terminology never bothers me. No one every gets anything like that right.
    It's really just a very minor annoyance. I doubt anyone was very worried about the terminology of this. They picked something catchy, that people would remember. This one works for that.

    We've played a very active role in helping to raise our grand kids since they were born, so this really is a shock to the system.

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    I think socializing for most people is important. I think, while modern technology can be intrusive, misleading and detrimental, it can also be very advantageous. Too many people believe what they read on the internet as factual without checking the validity of their reading material or just realizing that certain sources are going to be biased on one direction or the other, IMO. For 17 months I was completely deaf. Just a month before my 61 birthday, I awoke deaf. You can ask my wife who will tell you that the hearing my cochlear implant provides me is an absolute miracle! The point, I make is technology can be useful or detrimental.

    The terminology doesn't bother me one way or the other.
    Ken

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    Very true Ken, one thing I've noticed with elderly neighbours who are not on the internet is how isolated they are.

    I have a couple of neighbours who come over and I start a Skype call with their grandchildren.

    My neighbours complain that their grandchildren don't write or mail them photographs, of course they don't.

    It's amazing how important the net is for entertainment, communicating with the government, or keeping involved in the community......Rod.

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    There is one immutable fact... there is a horrid mindset that "old dogs cant learn new tricks"... They may well ride that horse until two things become paramount... finances, or grandchildren. You will see more "elder folk" who swear they cant deal with a tablet or a cell phone on the laptop managing finances. And when that flips to grandbabies you will see "tech" being adopted full form and maybe even with a little bit of fakery with regards to setting it up (of course that also feeds the initial motivation).

    It wasnt that long ago that an instance like this would leave a young or old family completely dead, casketed, and in-the-ground, with not a single family member present to mourn or give a send-off. News would land to anyone who was on the list weeks or months later.
    Sometimes I just want to look at pretty pictures,... Thats when I go to the Turners Forum

  12. #12
    Good grief. Really? It's 2 freakin' words...

    Ask the next guy you encounter in a wheelchair, "do you prefer crippled, handicapped, disabled, or physically challenged?" He's likely to tell you he prefers walking, and could care less what YOU want to call it. ( I recently asked my grandson-in-law, who severed his spine in a work accident in December, this question.)

    Social Distancing. A brand new 2-word, easy to remember, say and understand phrase that the entire world already knows the meaning of: Please Keep 6' Apart From Others To Help Prevent The Spread Of Viruses. Fine by me...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev Williams View Post
    Good grief. Really? It's 2 freakin' words...

    Ask the next guy you encounter in a wheelchair, "do you prefer crippled, handicapped, disabled, or physically challenged?" He's likely to tell you he prefers walking, and could care less what YOU want to call it. ( I recently asked my grandson-in-law, who severed his spine in a work accident in December, this question.)

    Social Distancing. A brand new 2-word, easy to remember, say and understand phrase that the entire world already knows the meaning of: Please Keep 6' Apart From Others To Help Prevent The Spread Of Viruses. Fine by me...
    You've completely missed the whole point of this thread. It's not really about the choice of a name, it's about how people can interact without catching the plague.

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    I missed the point of the thread as well. When I saw the title, my first reaction was disbelief and a bit of anger. At this point in time, "social distancing" has taken a different meaning than the literal meaning, and it might be too late to put that pedantic genie back in the bottle. Maybe during the next pandemic, the giant brains can bring some wordsmiths to the meetings to think of a more accurate catch phrase. A different title to this thread would be more appropriate and less sensational-seeking.

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    A different title to this thread would be more appropriate and less sensational-seeking.
    Agree with Mike.

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