By Cheryl Mattox Berry
Okay, I’m a little late to the party, but overnight I’ve become a big fan of Prince Ea, the spoken word artist/filmmaker/musician/motivational speaker, who has legions of fans on Facebook and YouTube.
His video, Can We Auto-Correct Humanity?, was shown at a conference I attended for college-age young women. The video spoke to many concerns that adults have about social media: It keeps young people from developing real relationships, affects self-esteem, destroys the ability to use words to express feelings, and focuses on materialism and superficial things, such as hair, clothes and body.
Prince Ea, 27, raps about the dangers of social media in a way that ought to make young people take notice. In rapid-fire rhymes, he tells them that technology has made us more selfish and separate as ever and how they measure self-worth by the number of followers and likes while ignoring those who actually love them.
He urges young people to not let social media dictate their lives. Take some cues from him: He prefers to enjoy a special moment instead of recording it with a phone and eating his meals rather than taking a picture of them.
As the video played, I looked around around the room. I wasn’t surprised to find many young ladies glued to their phones. I wanted to snatch the phone from the student seated next to me and yell at her, “This is exactly what he’s talking about. Listen and learn,” but I refrained.
Prince Ea, whose pseudonym means Prince of the Earth in Sumerian mythology, says the purpose of video is to show young people that they should be balanced. Check out the Can We Auto-Correct Humanity? video on YouTube, and let the young people in your life watch it. Then, ask them what they’ll do differently now that they know social media can take over their lives and keep them from truly enjoying what they’re so busy Face-Tweet-Snap-Insta-Pinning about.