First of all, I am not Catholic. I was raised Pentecostal (just one step below snake handling.) However, I saw a picture running around Facebook last night that was being disseminated by major news networks that implied that society has so drastically changed between the death of Pope John Paul II (2005) and the announcement of Pope Francis I (2013).

With all due respect, I’m calling BS.

First of all, apparently, the picture from 2005 is a shot from JPII’s corpse being displayed. So, many are saying, “Hey, of course people wouldn’t take pictures at a funeral!!”

Au contraire mon frere.

Image [cc] Ammar Abd Rabbo

Take a look at this picture that I found in doing a simple little Flickr search (for creative common pictures, no less.) Granted, all of these cameras don’t double as phones, GPS, pagers, blackberry’s, gaming systems, ect. But, basically, people haven’t changed, technology has (slightly.) Turn all of those flip-phones, digital cameras, film cameras, and video cameras into cell phones, and iPads, you have a duplicate of the 2013 pictures.

I’m not saying that anyone is right here. But, I will say that all of the “news” outlets that pushed this out as some monumental shift in humanity in eight years has overblown downfall of said humanity. We haven’t changed at all… we just have new toys to play with.

So, the next time you see something on Facebook that makes you think that humanity has lost its mind… just remember, by applying that rule, we lost our mind about the same time that the Internet evolved, or cell phones evolved, or instant photography evolved, or tintype cameras evolved, or pencils evolved, or paper evolved, or our ability to share a common experience evolved.

People that think that this is some garish expression of the base of humanity, let me share to you what I shared with a friend on Facebook last night that posted the initial photo:

I don’t know… each one will share it with multiple friends as a personal experience. So, even though there will be a news reel with the same scene, there will be 100,000 personal experiences being shared with millions of friends. That’s not reporting a news story, that’s sharing a personal experience with friends. [someone commented that this is why the media is there, so people should just soak in the experience]
Personal experiences should be… well, personal, but today, it is seen like you are being selfish if you aren’t sharing that with someone else. I don’t think that any of these people feel that they are unique, but rather that they are sharing a unique experience with someone else.

Even after all of this, I still think that all of those media outlets that released this photo with a deceptive caption should be called out for lazy journalism. I’m just a simple blogger that doesn’t exactly spend a lot of time researching the topics I write about, but I know when something looks too good to be true. I usually don’t point out when my Facebook friends get hooked by these types of sloppy journalism tricks. But this time, I’m standing up and calling BS!! Technology shifts at a rapid rate… humanity usually lags far behind.