Smartphones have radically changed the way we relate to each other. Social networks allow us to create as many new interactions as we like, and to end them just as easily, and this has completely changed the way we approach new friendships and form sexual habits.
Technology has also revolutionised our attitude towards other people: in what the author calls techno-mediated communication, the language we use is direct, and we immediately seek to form close, intimate relationships with other people. This is simply an illusion, however, because these relationships bypass the initial stage in which we usually take a little time to get to know each other. When we form online relationships, we tend to treat the other person in one of two ways, either by being overly friendly and direct, or by rejecting them outright, casting them aside without giving them a second thought. During the initial stages of a new romantic relationship, this kind of behaviour takes away the all-important sense of mystery. Eroticism, after all, is based on our curiosity to explore and fantasise about something new, but everything in our society has now become transparent and obvious, and therefore lacks excitement and allure.
We are now able to contact anyone who we feel might share the same interests as us at any time of the day or night. They are always there, always available, but this prevents us from daydreaming about someone, from missing them, which is an important factor in any relationship. It drives us to start behaving like children, constantly looking for a new toy to satisfy our needs and wants. Since we have constant access to any kind of toy we like, we never actually have the chance to miss something, to long for it, and we lose all sense of desire. The word desire, in fact, describes the feeling of wanting something that will satisfy a need, something that we do not possess yet, and therefore pushes us to keep searching. Our hyper-connected society, however, is geared towards satisfying a need, rather than a desire, so it provides us with everything we want and satisfies all our fleeting, fickle needs.