25 May 2020
Since the coronavirus pandemic hit, video chats have become part of our daily life. All kinds of video communications were approached by kids from elementary schools, teenagers from highschools, university students, employees of all industries who had to regularly discuss strategies, plans, and so on. It even spread to physical exercise and doctors’ appointments. All the so-called teleconsultations were increasingly replaced by video consultations. No need to mention the psychotherapists, for whom online consultation turned out to be an outstanding hit. Not only their former patients but also those who found it difficult to talk face to face previously - thanks to the video platform in the pandemic era - decided to turn to them for help.
We could mark it out forever, yet none of us needs the prove. We live in these times and we do observe what is happening around. Even concerts take place at home! From the very beginning of COVID-19 lockdown, we are able to visit artists' own flats, all over the world! We have the opportunity to listen to the greatest hits and also new releases. What a time!
Thus coronavirus definitely changed our use of the Internet. Society's online behavior and activity have shifted, sometimes starkly, as the virus pushed and forced us to it. Even though we had access to all platforms that are currently in use earlier, it is the Coronavirus with its lockdown, who made it so popular that we can talk about a Zoom Boom generation.
Until now, applications such as Facebook, Netflix, YouTube, or Instagram dominated in all rankings. However, the lockdown has given a big boost to all those forgotten apps that used to linger in shadow. It's obviously because we want to see one another. As a result, all tools that allow friends, business partners, or relatives join a single video chat, gain popularity. This in turn meant that we are talking about a generation related to Zoom, which is one of the platforms dedicated to video communication.
The question is, why Zoom Boom? After all, we use various apps, such as Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex Meetings, FaceTime, Houseparty, and all manner of other video-calling applications.
The answer is to be found in the statistics! At the end of December Zoom reported a maximum of 10 million daily users. Let's compare it with March... when 200 million people were using it every single day. So, none of the other platforms has taken off quite like Zoom. We can read that people use Zoom not only to work or socialize but also to sing in the choirs, play in the bands, pray together in the church, or attend weddings and funerals. Hence, Zoom Boom! None of the platforms is gaining such popularity at this time, which is why such a term was used in the context of recent events and changes.
So say hi to all your fellows, coz we are all the generation of Zoom folks! ZOOM BOOM!
Stay at home times have removed the luxury of face-to-face meetings. If you want to see your colleagues, friends, relatives, it has to be done on screen. While lockdown, video conferencing software is the cornerstone of successful and productive classes, meetings, debates, etc. We have to admit that, broadly speaking, the online infrastructure has coped pretty well with everyone piling onto it - at least for those with access to more robust services. Thanks to this, we are able to live together, though at a distance. Seeing someone, talking, playing online games together, or throwing out parties via webcams make sitting at home not so bad for people.
Obviously, as prof Rubin Dunbar stated, there is no substitute for face-to-face contact when it comes to any kind of relationship. Too much video-calling can be disassociating and make one feel alone even when we are together on screen. However nowadays, when we face the pandemic issue, it definitely is a great tool to stay in touch with the close ones and also to keep up to date with all the school or business matters.
And the question arises:
Will the space rented for offices decrease? Will the large part of the work-life move to homes or cafes?
Will all business meetings, not only intercontinental, take place online? Will we live at a distance?
Unfortunately, neither we nor the scientists know. It's too early to judge, too early to guess. Only time can tell.
However, as Satya Nadella from Microsoft said, digital transformation has advanced two years in two months. It's happened because we seek to be entertained, to be connected, and to keep track of what is happening during the pandemic. So it may vividly change the functioning of many companies and industries. The concept of remote work will distinctly be redefined. In the music industry, we see a lot of changes as well. For example, recording concerts from many places around the world. Professional editing of sounds recorded not in the studio, but at home with some basic equipment. Moreover, previously mentioned facilitation regarding medicine, education, and many other areas of our lives. Will it stay this way? History will eventually reveal whether this lockdown was the dawn of a new tech generation or merely a blip before things returned to the way they were.
Yet, what has to be said, it definitely is a time and situation which shows how much we do owe to technology. So, standing ovation to those, who in every company, school, uni, or some super huge institution took care and made sure that the data flow and the quality are smooth and high.
By Marta Luber on 25 May 2020
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