Pay Attention!

According to Seth Godin: “We’ve been trained since youth to replace paying attention with taking notes. That’s a shame.” It’s amazing how he encapsulated in one short sentence (ok, two, if you count the extra comment) what many of us have observed all these years.

In the Word Camp event I attended last September (wow, the days just flew by), a whole bunch of bloggers brought their laptops and decided to post the minute-by-minute events as they were unfolding. I think they call it liveblogging. That’s cool and all, but in one particular session, I was rather annoyed by a seatmate who was so busy liveblogging that he kept asking “Ano daw?” to his friend (a very patient friend, if I may add) whenever the audience would burst out in laughter in response to the speaker’s punchline.

Don’t you just hate having to repeat a joke to someone who wasn’t paying attention? It disrupts your enjoyment of humor because midway through your ha-ha-ha, while your mouth and nostrils are wide open, you have to cut it short because an “important” person wants in on the joke… which was there for the taking if only he was listening in the first place!

Some people think they have the capacity to listen to a speaker and compose an article simultaneously. Experts argue that multitasking is a counterproductive habit that causes more harm than good. I guess Mr. Liveblogger was just trying to prove that theory.