OPINION

Dickson: Social media and the importance of the radio community

Dec 5, 2023, 7:00 AM

Image of Utah's Morning News host Amanda Dickson and colleague Kate Davis, who says she is grateful...

FILE: Utah's Morning News host Amanda Dickson and former Associate Producer Kate Davis. (Amanda Dickson)

(Amanda Dickson)

SALT LAKE CITY — I have been thinking a lot lately about the effect of social media, and of radio, on all of us. I’ve wondered why, when I am connecting multiple times a day on multiple platforms, I feel less connected to my fellow man, not more.

What occurred to me as I pondered this is that when we are looking at Facebook or Instagram, we are all seeing different stories, different pictures and posts, at different times. The algorithm serves up an entirely different collage of images and commentary to me than it does to you. Plus, I pick up my phone to check my feeds at different times of the day than you do.

The radio community

Radio is one of the few experiences, other than live sporting events or theater when we are all getting the same information at the same time. When Tim Hughes and I report on a story or traffic accident in the morning, you hear about it as we report on it. We’re all connected in time.

If it’s 6:30 a.m., we’re all a little tired. When the sunrise is beautiful, we tell each other. In the event there is something that will make you late to work or school, we share that.

KSL also connects us to place. Our interest in Utah and what happens here joins us together. KSL NewsRadio has listeners who join us from all over the world, so we aren’t connected physically, necessarily. But we are connected by our concern (some would say love) for this community.

In fact, community is what KSL NewsRadio gives us. Gives me. In a time when more and more radio is pre-recorded in another city and played back for you, KSL is grounding. It turns out, we may actually need this ground under our feet if we want to feel grounded.

Meaningful connection

I am in search of more paths to meaningful connection. This is my antidote to the focus-sucking vacuum that is social media. I want to know my neighbors better, know what kind of trees are outside my window, what the students who walk by my window every morning on their way to West High School are thinking about.

My goal is to spend ten times more time talking to people in person than I do messaging or texting them. I want to see their facial expressions and know how they’re feeling now – not 8 hours from now when I finally get around to seeing their post.

I don’t have a crystal ball to know what media will look like in the future. If Mark Zuckerberg is right, we’ll move from social media immersion to the multiverse. There, we’ll be reduced to avatars trying to read other avatar’s expressions. What will happen to the human craving for real connection then? Who will we become when the closest thing to real-time is the constant refreshing of our feeds?

What I do know is that radio will still be here. Radio will give us what it’s given us since its earliest days in the 20th century – a voice on the other end who cares about us, here and now.


Other reading:


 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Opinion

possible new jazz arena shown in rendering of downtown salt lake...

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: How to make a billionaire wealthier

Billionaire and Jazz owner Ryan Smith teased at a possible new arena recently. Will he pay for it, or have the state do it for him?

2 days ago

"Scrambled" is a good movie you'll want to see just for Leah McKendrick....

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show Review: ‘Scrambled’ actress Leah McKendrick was a joy to watch

Actress Leah McKendrick leaves you wanting more of her after watching "Scrambled". It's a good story about "writing what you know."

27 days ago

"The Promised Land" movie is packed with good storytelling and a fun main character....

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show Review: ‘The Promised Land’ is good storytelling with a side of Mads Mikkelsen

Good storytelling and Mads Mikkelsen make for "Promised Land" being a movie you'll want to see as soon as you can.

28 days ago

holiday shoppers get ready to start spending at city creek mall...

Amanda Dickson

Dickson: All I want for Christmas is to control my holiday spending!

Amanda Dickson wants to start doing a better job of controlling her holiday spending -- putting the emphasis on people rather than stuff.

3 months ago

KSL Movie Show co-host Steve Salles says "Maestro" is a fine picture you won't want to miss....

Steve Salles

KSL Movie Show review: ‘Maestro’ shows a renown composer, flaws and all, exquisitely

Don't miss this movie review of Bradley Cooper's portrayal of Leonard Bernstein. "Maestro" is and exquisite and real must-see picture.

3 months ago

Deedee Corradini, the former Salt Lake City mayor, was instrumental in getting the Olympics to Utah...

Amanda Dickson

Dickson: Remembering Deedee Corradini after the Olympics news today

Former Salt Lake City Mayor Deedee Corradini was instrumental in getting the Olympics. She would be ecstatic to see them again.

3 months ago

Sponsored Articles

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Dickson: Social media and the importance of the radio community