Edge

V-Day takes a digital twist

A nice dinner and some boxed chocolates make up the classic Valentine’s Day, but in the busy stage of life that college students have, sometimes a Skype date just has to do.

For Senior Laura Selvey and her boyfriend of more than three years, Peter Self, this is the case. This is the first time in a while that the two have been apart because Self has recently moved to Kansas to pursue his Ph.D.

“For Valentine’s Day, we will probably just Skype each other like we do every other night,” Selvey said.

She doesn’t expect flowers or any grand gesture since they have been together for so long, but Skype has turned into the key to keeping this couple close on celebrations like this, as it has for countless other young couples dealing with distance.

“I’ve tried to do long distance relationships before and they never worked,” Selvey said. “So it definitely helps.”

Young adults, like Selvey, have learned to communicate digitally as well as they have in any other way. For many, the closest to writing a love letter they have ever gotten is one of

those elementary school notes that asked the nerve-racking question; “Do you like me? Check yes or no.”

In a world where Facebook pokes and “sexting” have become the norms of flirting, it would seem that young adults find it suitable to communicate everything digitally. Many students said were against the V-Day proposal via technology because it simply wasn’t romantic or personal enough. Men and women alike said they wanted more words and more thought put into the special day, even if they didn’t know the person that well.

Professor Samantha Phillips teaches an English class at the University of Miami entitled “Relationships in the Digital Age,” that discusses how romantic communication has changed since the mid 90s. Though she praises the opportunities that technology has offered, especially in communication, she sees where students could want more.

“Students aren’t oblivious, they are aware that some of this communication isn’t so great,” Phillips said. “And they see that it can be lonely, impersonal and, sometimes, even sad. People use technology to avoid awkward situations like eye contact or saying hi and the person not responding. It’s a security blanket. They have a reliance on it and that’s easier than facing rejection, which is completely understandable.”

For long-distance relationships, Phillips agrees that they have a better chance at survival with new technologies like Skype available, but as far as Valentine’s Day isconcerned, she says there are better ways to go about asking someone out.

“It better be a really good text at the very least,” Phillips said with a laugh.

Young adults may claim that texting works just fine, Facebook is the ideal way to connect people, and e-mail is just plain convenient, but when it comes to asking someone to be your Valentine channel your inner first-grader and try a box of cut-out cartoon cards instead.

Rebecca Lattanzio may be contacted at rlattanzio@themiamihurricane.com.

Rebecca Lattanzio may be contacted at rlattanzio@themiamihurricane.com.
February 13, 2011

Reporters

Rebecca Lattanzio

Contributing EDGE Writer


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • Error

The name conjures images of tranquil waters, lush palm trees and cool breezes. The faces conjure ima ...

A heap of preseason accolades are being showered daily on the University of Miami football players. ...

James Jones, who starred at Hialeah American High School, the University of Miami and was a part of ...

A classic good news/bad news scenerio arose for Miami Hurricanes football at the recent Atlantic Coa ...

The University of Miami football players are not the only ones getting preseason accolades. The guys ...

Looking back on 15 years of the University of Miami Business Plan Competition, hosted by the School ...

Read the latest entries from UM students who are spending part or all of their summer visiting diffe ...

Value in the Era of Analytics ...

Summer Creative Writing Camp Inspires Young Writers to Release Their Emotions Onto the Page. ...

Gomez, an expert on human values and attitudes in post-Castro Cuba, will serve as interim director o ...

RSS Error: A feed could not be found at http://www.hurricanesports.com/. A feed with an invalid mime type may fall victim to this error, or SimplePie was unable to auto-discover it.. Use force_feed() if you are certain this URL is a real feed.

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly on Thursdays during the regular academic year.