Wired: The Glorious, Almost-Disconnected Boredom of My Walk in Japan. “I have configured servers, written code, built web pages, helped design products used by millions of people. I am firmly in the camp that believes technology is generally bending the world in a positive direction. Yet, for me, Twitter foments neurosis, Facebook sadness, Google News a sense of foreboding. Instagram turns me covetous. All of them make me want to do it—whatever ‘it’ may be—for the likes, the comments. I can’t help but feel that I am the worst version of myself, being performative on a very short, very depressing timeline. A timeline of seconds.” This is a long read, but it’s a wonderful read. Please read it.
New York Times: Do Not Disturb: How I Ditched My Phone and Unbroke My Brain. “I’ve been a heavy phone user for my entire adult life. But sometime last year, I crossed the invisible line into problem territory. My symptoms were all the typical ones: I found myself incapable of reading books, watching full-length movies or having long uninterrupted conversations. Social media made me angry and anxious, and even the digital spaces I once found soothing (group texts, podcasts, YouTube k-holes) weren’t helping. I tried various tricks to curb my usage, like deleting Twitter every weekend, turning my screen grayscale and installing app-blockers. But I always relapsed.”
Reuters: The digital drug: Internet addiction spawns U.S. treatment programs. ” When Danny Reagan was 13, he began exhibiting signs of what doctors usually associate with drug addiction. He became agitated, secretive and withdrew from friends. He had quit baseball and Boy Scouts, and he stopped doing homework and showering. But he was not using drugs. He was hooked on YouTube and video games, to the point where he could do nothing else. As doctors would confirm, he was addicted to his electronics.”
EurekAlert: Excessive social media use is comparable to drug addiction . “Bad decision-making is a trait oftentimes associated with drug addicts and pathological gamblers, but what about people who excessively use social media? New research from Michigan State University shows a connection between social media use and impaired risky decision-making, which is commonly deficient in substance addiction.”
ScienceBlog: Using Vibration To Curb Digital Addiction. “In his research on college students’ productivity, Cornell Tech graduate student Fabian Okeke heard many accounts of time lost to social media, beginning with a click over to Facebook or YouTube for a quick distraction. But the distraction was not always so quick.”
Inc.: 1,600 People Quit Social Media for a Month-Long ‘Digital Declutter.’ Amazing Things Happened. “Think back to the last time you ate a real blow out meal, the kind that causes you to unbutton your pants and double check your antacid supply. Remember the sensation of discomfort, bloat, and regret? That’s how a lot of folks are feeling about their digital diets these days. After gorging on the mental equivalent of junk food — nasty political rants, time-wasting quizzes, compulsive browsing — they’re looking up and telling themselves, ‘Something has got to change.'”
Campus Technology: McGill U Researcher: Smartphone Addiction Is Normal Need to Connect on Overdrive. “We stare at our phones all the time not because the devices themselves are addictive, but because we’re driven to socialize, according to a recent literature review by researchers at McGill University.”