Social Distancing Could Change Our Relationship With FaceTime
Video tech earns new cultural significance as quarantine spreads
Karen Wright loves to sing to her three-month-old grandson, August. She croons Harry Belafonte’s “Banana Boat Song”: “Day-o, day-o, daylight come and me wan’ go home.” Sometimes she throws in a little Bob Marley, and dances along. Wright loves seeing August’s eyes light up at the sound of her voice.
Wright does this from more than 1,000 miles away. She lives in Tallahassee, and her grandson is in Toronto. Wright’s daughter was supposed to visit her mom in Florida in early April so that August could finally meet his grandma. But the family has decided that they shouldn’t travel, because of the coronavirus outbreak, which continues to spread quickly across the United States and around the world. More than 70 people have tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, in Florida so far, and Wright, a certified nursing assistant who works with elderly patients, knows well the precautions people must take to stem the spread of the disease.
So for now, Wright and her family spend time together through their phones on Duo, the Google videochatting app. It’s the next best thing.
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