A Generation of Screen Slaves
I have a feeling one day many of us will sign up for TA meetings.
What is TA you ask? Tech-o-holics Anonymous.
How does the saying go again? Too much of a good thing can make you sick? Well, if that’s the case, I think there are a lot of people out there who need to go see a doctor. Technology has taken over our lives.
That moment when you’re in a room with eight people and you tune in to an intensely eerie silence vibrating through the walls is a truly scary one. All eight faces are staring directly into the face of their super computers inevitably using one of four social media platforms: Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. I’d like to just sit back and accept that this is what our world has come to: Girls getting upset if their photo doesn’t get at least 100 likes or being bummed if a Facebook comment doesn’t go over as well as planned. But I know we’re better than that.
In the novel “The End of Absence,” Canadian author and journalist Michael Harris brings an important argument to the table that nullifies the future existence of daydreaming in today’s tech-saturated society.
The beauty of solitude introspection is being trampled by the onslaught of continual advancements of technology. One could argue that this is an amazing thing for the world. This new technology could enable our lives to move much more fluidly, lending us more time to do what we want, when we want. Right?
Wrong. The advantages of technology have caused us to step backward in some areas of our collective existence.
Doug Tompkins, cofounder of North Face and Esprit, describes computers and smartphones as “deskilling devices.” Tompkins argues that that these devices are making us dumber. We’re immersed in a system that now requires the use of a cell phone just to get around, just to function, and so the logic of that cellphone has been imposed on us.
He couldn’t be more spot on.
According to ansolex.com approximately one out of every eight Americans has started showing signs of Internet addiction with almost eight percent of our youth fully addicted. Now the reference to the AA meetings is starting to make a little bit of sense, isn’t it?
So now that the problem has been pointed out, I’d like to offer a solution. Seeing as I’m just as guilty as you are for overusing all of the technology I have at my disposal, I wouldn’t suggest getting rid of it altogether. Instead, I challenge you to simply not use your phone, computer or tablet in the presence of others. When engaged in a conversation, put your phone in your pocket and leave it there. Show others the respect they deserve when they’re talking and try to withhold that nagging urge to check your Snapchat. Because who knows, maybe your friends actually have something valuable to say.
Wouldn’t that be crazy?
Featured photo courtesy of: Researchresults