🀳 Have screens made us stop experiencing?

🀳 Have screens made us stop experiencing?

Thousands filmed the countdown to the new year at a celebration in Paris. They have forgotten to experience, occupied with documenting, some say. That's nonsense.

Mathias Sundin
Mathias Sundin

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πŸ“± Can you experience and film at the same time?

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"We have forgotten to experience because we are so busy documenting," wrote Arash Gilan on LinkedIn and posted a video from New Year's Eve in Paris.

It's that kind of sweeping pessimistic statement that is often taken as truth and becomes a critique of the time we live in. The implication: Things were better before.

But is it really so? Can't you experience and document at the same time? Can't the film or picture be part of an experience, also much later?

One of the finest memories of my life is Christmas in Locorotondo in southern Italy. An incredibly cute little town, decorated to the teeth for Christmas.

In the square a musician played, and the Italians surprised us, slightly stiffer Swedes, by singing along to every song and even starting to dance spontaneously.

I filmed it.

These films I have watched several times. When I do it again now, I get tears in my eyes. Our son Teddy is so small and happy, the Italians are so wonderful, it is so beautiful.


Don't tell me that I didn't experience anything. Our experience there and then was very strong. If we hadn't filmed, it wouldn't have been greater, and above all, the memory would have faded over the years. Now we can look at the videos and pictures and experience it again.

The memory of Grandpa

A few years ago, my brother and I found old videos that Dad had filmed sometime in the late 1980s. Fascinated, we sat and watched hours of our childhood. Santa's entrance on Christmas, how we played in the snow, the dogs, and much more.

My grandfather passed away in the early 1990s when I had just become a teenager. I have some pictures, but no videos of him. Even though I continuously experienced without filming (there were no mobile phones then), I have only few strong memories of him. I don't remember his voice, or how he moved. I remember him, of course, but would so much like to remember more.

Grandma and Grandpa.

As my brother and I sat there watching Dad's films, we suddenly saw Grandma and Grandpa's big green Ford driving towards our house. They turned onto our road and parked in the driveway. The car door opened.

Now! Finally, we were going to see Grandpa! Maybe hear his voice?

Then Dad stopped filming.

Mathias Sundin
The Angry Optimist