> Consider that the ability to concentrate without distraction on hard tasks is becoming increasingly valuable in an increasingly complicated economy. Social media weakens this skill because it’s engineered to be addictive. The more you use social media in the way it’s designed to be used — persistently throughout your waking hours — the more your brain learns to crave a quick hit of stimulus at the slightest hint of boredom.
I've recently been finding it really hard to concentrate on my work and I genuinely think this might be the reason. I find myself compulsively opening twitter and tumblr and scrolling through for ages before realising that literally none of it is interesting. I'm just scrolling past brightly coloured images and auto-playing videos while completely distracted and detached from the real world.
I agree with the sentiment elsewhere in these comments that the solution isn't to completely delete your accounts (I think they can have some value when used in moderation), but rather to change the way I use them. Maybe deleting the native apps and using the webapps will raise the barrier to entry high enough that I'll only use them when there's actually something I want to do on them.
As for Facebook, I deleted that a few months ago and my quality of life instantly increased.
I've overcome my Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter problems, but I can't seem to shake Hacker News.
I literally owe many of my succesful professional decisions to researches that initally started here. I find some interesting article, read the comments first, then the article, then the comments again. In the middle of this flow, I decide whether it is worthy to save to my Pocket account. Those things in my Pocket quite often become kickstarters for things that I eventually adopt using or learning. I see no way of giving up such opportunity. Why would anyone do that? (That is a serious question that I really wish there exists a convincing answer)
Just enough distraction for my work day.
Twitter I don't use at all. I don't even read it.
I utilize their 2-feed layout option with HN (set to "Trending" posts) on the left and "visual inspiration" sites on the right (default is Dribbble, but I have Lapa, ffffound, Design Inspiration, etc. in the list, too).
It's quite simple, when I'm looking for something, I do a google-based site-specific search to HN. I often find very old threads with really good value.
I still follow things every few days to stay on top of trends. I haven't discovered how to catch up with those without frequent visits, though. Perhaps the solution lies in NLP summary technology.
In the case of Facebook I found that just removing it from my bookmarks bar helped loads. Prevents me from just clicking on it half-dazed and starting to scroll.
HN is the one where I find myself checking several times/day and I constantly have 20+ HN tabs. The pattern is something like this:
1) "Oh, interesting topic!"
2) Open in a tab
3) Read existing comments & the link (I don't always do the latter, admittedly)
4) Come back N hours later, read new comments
5) Repeat #4 over a day or two
6) Close tab unless I haven't read the link yet. If I haven't, then they tend to stick around until I do or send it off into OneTab for ultimate procrastination.
This was true with Slashdot as well, now that I think about it. Back in the day it had the same draw for the same reasons. Though I think HN is a better version, since it doesn't have a few editors driving it like /. did, which was often frustrating.
Correct. But like Professor Ted Kaczynski stated in his "Technology Manifesto"
> The bad parts of technology cannot be separated from the good parts.
This here is pretty much applicable to everything online, not just SM. Example: FaceBook and Twitter are used to organize protests, break news, reconnect with lost loved ones. The same technology sites are also used to recruit terr_ists, phish and spam seniors and unsuspecting people, troll and commit felony crimes etc...
1) Reading HN all the time creates a false sense that things are moving much faster than they really are.
2) I'd suggesting reading "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck" and it'll remind you your time is finite
Mark Manson "THE SUBTLE ART OF NOT GIVING A F_CK" (12 minute read) => https://markmanson.net/not-giving-a-fuck
"In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be "positive" all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people."
That being said this looks interesting and I am going to give this a read. Thanks for the tip!
I have similar problems with the net in general. This happens to me all too often. I decide to do something like take a shower. I walk to the shower and turn it on letting it heat up. I remember something that I want to remind myself to do. I walk over to the computer to type in a reminder. Before I even start typing the reminder something on the screen distracts me. 5-15 minutes go by. I go back to the shower and just before getting in I realize I never typed the reminder. So, I walk over to the computer to type the reminder and the same thing happens again. This type of thing has happened on more than one occasion. For example I'm walking out of the house, at the door I remember something tiny I want to do on the computer (send a mail, write a reminder, ...) same things happen as above.
Oh funny thing I found I was wrong about showdead setting there... I had assumed if I wanted myself to be declared dead/offline I could set my profile to show dead.. lol
What's its functionality?
I wouldn't mind reporting on these, or vouching for the good ones, but it would be nice to have a channel where I could get feedback -- such as "this use was banned for reason xyz on these 10 comments".
The "vouch" feature was recently added exactly for the purpose of correcting those mistakes as we spot them - so I'd say it is useful. Moderators are just people and have finite time too.
I can only block the whole domain, right?
Considering that he was very very active on HN in the past (karma 155077), I wonder what his reasoning is to cut back?
I think we have since learned about the influence of survivor bias, that you can really accomplish the same things in any programming language and that since YC itself is now focusing on larger problems, some with sociological and political leanings, that it is best to move on from looking at things at the code level and instead look at the bigger picture.
There are no moderation tools at present which can prevent this sort of in-fighting with blatant censorship.
In the absence of such tools, the only viable solution is a fragmentation of the community. This is most apparent to HN readers with the rise of lobste.rs
So, a bit closer to underlying mechanics of social networking in practice than it would seem on surface. Enough to get a similar participation high. That's on top of the knowledge expansion we use to justify the other high coming from the fact that we just enjoy reading this stuff. ;)
> If you turn it on you'll only be allowed to visit the site for maxvisit minutes at a time, with gaps of minaway minutes in between. The defaults are 20 and 180, which would let you view the site for 20 minutes at a time, and then not allow you back in for 3 hours.
You can set it to something more extreme, like maxvisit=60 minaway=720, and then it'll only allow you a one-hour session every twelve hours, which in practice usually means you can only go here once per day. Doing this turns HN from a distraction to something you have to consciously choose to visit.
One thing that's helping is Lobsters. Lobsters is super slow so if I do make a full switch from HN to that I only need to check it a handful of times a week.
But to me, it's not so much about how much time I spend on the time but rather the why. I simply don't get as much value out of HN as I think I do. Most news are irrelevant and unimportant, and I haven't really learned anything too insightful like others said they have (sadly). Simply put, tech news boards apparently just aren't for me.
Now, Lobste.rs is different. They're a small community with a narrower focus on mostly tech stuff. They have relatively low noise with a preference for deeper insight on tech. You'll see more writeups on algorithms than product releases for instance. They also have an open-source website and open moderation log. A bit radical on occasion like where owner JCS just got rid of downvotes to experiment if upvote-only would keep quality without total censorship.
Definitely check out the articles over there on top of the ones here. The comments especially as people often say something there that someone here overlooked or vice versa.
It would be helpful to see the specific links that you're basing this view on, so we could clear them up.
So even at HN, the most addictive content is considered to have the highest value. Seems…topical.
It's interesting to see HN debate itself. The asymmetrical karma allocation can be a really interesting factor.
1. Scan headlines for a topic I'm interested in, say, geometric algebra.
2. Rapidly scan the comments for people linking to other media (books, blog posts, libraries, etc.) that are related to geometric algebra.
I get vastly superior pointers to useful material this way than any other approach I've tried, and I'm extremely good at research anyway.
But when I get frustrated on a problem or am knee deep in technical debt, you can be I'll flip over to Hacker News.
I also don't bother with Twitter anymore. I still have an account but don't ever open it. Instagram and Snapchat are rather boring for me also.
So while I like social I don't really care for the media.
The comments are seriously addictive; I wish there was a way to hide 90% of them to make it easier to stop reading.
Yes, I can very easily `sudo vi /etc/hosts` to undo, but I never did.
Helps that I could really pull it up on my iPhone if I needed, but this way I could focus when I needed to, and if I was on my mobile I was clearly doing other stuff.
HN is problematic because signal/noise ratio is relatively high.
Then I got a better job, and now I feel a lot less compulsion to sit and read the internet.
That way I have enough time to think and question whether I really want to open the page I was about to open, and I don't disable the whole thing if I actually need to visit it.
I recently solved this problem, yes 'solved' and it worked from day one. Thanks to Cal Newport's ideas.
The trick was this (YMMV, but I believe you sound exactly like me):
Imagine your mind like your desk. Every morning it's empty. (Usually) You wake up you load it up with all sorts of crap to entertain yourself, social media, Reddit, hacker news etc, etc.
By the time you get to work, there is no place to put work stuff on that desk. You try to put work stuff on it, but pretty much the whole desk is filled with Twitter/Tumblr/Facebook shit. So even if you make some space for the work stuff, sooner or later you focus on Tumblr again. Work stuff gets pushed out.
Generally in my case, by 2PM I manage to clear out all the distracting stuff and get focused.
The solution was this: BORE YOURSELF at every available opportunity.
When I start my morning, I refused to pick up my phone and check out social media (usually I would take a 45 minute dump just catching up on stuff posted last night). Sure my morning chores became a bit boring, but I also became more efficient (I started getting to work sooner).
Basically, by the time I get to my desk, I am so bored that the most interesting thing I can do is work. And my work (programming) is a very interesting task, it used to keep me engaged for hours and hours, it's just that Social Media defeated it.
I do check social media. I check it around 2PM after my standup. That 'impulsive' desire to constantly check it is gone. I catch up on all the social media in the evening or at night (but it doesn't create that compulsive pattern anymore.
End result: My productivity has gone up by 5-6 times. I have a performance enhancement story to work on and I managed to fix 6-7 bugs I found during my work, and it turns out that it was a whole team's sprint's work.
It's exceedingly difficult to take charge of one's moment-to-moment experience of the world, but in those rare instances when I achieve it it's very rewarding.
One thing that I haven't seen anyone commenting is that nowadays Facebook becomes the place where you test ads, write content, become an expert, and get clients... so many folks can't just quit. Heck, I still want to get started on it...
But maybe carrying a dumb phone during the day and coming back to the smartphone during the night is a way to try unplugging for a couple hours.
For example, I waste at least 2 hours a day on the weekend on HN. I learn a little bit, but not as much as if I had been actively trying to learn a new technology or topic. Also on HN, I get frustrated with others' responses, so it affects me mentally as well. If anything is engineered to be addictive for those in tech, it's HN.
Also, news. I can read news sites for hours. Constantly going back to the same headlines, waiting for something new.
And games. I have a handful of games I'll waste time on.
And deal websites. I want to save money.
The only way to stop all of it? Stop using my phone and computer.
In fact, most of them are mostly not series any more: they are serials. That's infinitely more addictive.
In a series you can watch a random episode, almost or fully independent from the other ones (so you don't care so much about missing one episode now and then), that has an introduction, a progression and a conclusion. The continuous background is weak, sometimes almost non-existent, just to give a little bit of matter to the characters.
In a serial, you cannot miss an episode because it's just one long story cut in chapters, and the episode theme is more and more secondary nowadays. When you start a serial, you're hooked, you need to see all episode to be able to follow (and even if you happen to get bored, you want to finish the season to know the final word). Also, instead of cooling down after the climax as in a series, each episode ends with a cliffhanger ; that means your consumption becomes compulsive, you want another episode right away, or as soon as possible.
In fact every 'cultural' production nowadays aims at binge consumption and is tailored for this unique purpose.
If social media really is addictive, then moderation might not work. Most alcoholics aren't capable of having just one drink, most smokers aren't capable of having just one cigarette. Absolute prohibitions are cognitively much easier than moderation.
One reason I do not wish to close my Facebook account is for the groups and events. Facebook Timeline is not something I look at daily, but rather once or twice a week, to find upcoming events I might be interested in, particularly ones in which people I know have already expressed an interest.
When being on Facebook becomes an activity in itself, then I think it becomes problematic.
AA helps you rebuild your life. It's a whole lot more than just coping with addiction.
At some point over the last couple of years AA started coming under attack for some inexplicable reason. There's a lot more to it than just statistics.
One interesting finding is that the sense of self-efficacy gained through moderation makes dealing with relapses or setbacks easier when compared to the all or nothing approaches.
I met a number of people that had just traded one addiction for another. They were AA-meeting-addicts.
When I start the workday, I toggle it on, and every time I try to load my social stuff (HN included) it puts up a big red warning.
I found that the majority of my wasted time was because I impulsively opened a tab to somewhere during like 10 seconds of downtime while waiting for something. And having this little block in place stopped it in its tracks.
I'm not near my PC to be able to say which one exactly, but there are several made specifically for this kind of thing.
We are all going to "collaborate" endlessly into ever higher heights of achievement.
"Social" was being integrated, per force, into the workforce.
And... real productivity dropped, and people became stressed out.
Facebook et al. aren't at odds with the contemporary corporate workplace. They just exemplify what a crap policy it is.
Imagine being forced to be on Facebook 8, 10, 12 hours a day, while trying to actually accomplish something. That's what much of the contemporary workplace has become at major corporations with which I'm familiar.
Am I bitter? A little... more than. Because they kept telling my my trouble concentrating in such environments was my fault.
Whatever you think of social media, such workplaces have not earned the right to express any opinion on the matter.
And it doesn't help that the software itself is universally bad, if it were ever exposed to the public internet where people had a choice to use it or not, it would sink without trace...
At a large company I worked at they tried discussion software but once the shine was gone, out of 150K people you'd have like 10 people who actually posted and on this web discussion board thingy and the content was all filler. Sometimes funny filler, but filler none the less. Imagine the sadness of a HN with only 10 participants.
I really have to disagree with this. Social media can be essential in a company that is widely geographically distributed and needs to collaborate, such as a technical sales field with different offices and R&D groups. Really depends on incentives.
That's worked pretty well for me. Also check out Kill News Feed and Kill Tweet Stream to avoid distraction if you need to use eg Facebook events or Twitter DMs.
> Social media weakens this skill because it’s engineered to be addictive.
Absolutely. App companies like FB and Twitter are on a constant quest to eat up as much of your time as possible, in pursuit of metrics like "daily active users" (they want you there daily) and "average session time" (they want you there as long as possible).
Ultimately, they're maximizing ad revenue. An hour of your time spent feed scrolling is worth about 10 cents to Facebook.
The other day I realized that social media is essentially the same thing tabloid junk. Only now in the social media we choose to watch it we seek it out and then comment on it we become part of it.
As for the premise of the article, I can see how your brain craves immediate relief from boredom. That's really what it is, right? My work is fairly interesting to me, so I've never had the overwhelming and constant desire to distract myself from it. Perhaps a few articles here and there for a mental break.
LeechBlock has helped me out of this habit. I'd recommend giving it a shot.
Might as well add (modern?) gaming to the list—it has the exact same property.
Games and social media, OTOH, are designed for continuous consumption without end. Here, "being addictive" is basically the only thing that matters (and in fact, is the only variable companies actually measure).
And at the other end of the age scale, my MiL watched (watches) MASH (a 70s sitcom about the Korean war, which sounds improbable but was actually hilarious due to good writers) and she never, ever laughs, quiet as a church service, but I'd LMAO at a funny line I'd never heard before, and her entire family would stare at me like I'm insane. "But don't you get it, it was hilarious, Radar compared the other guy's wife to ..." and they'd just shush me like in church. I'm not entirely sure what she's thinking when she sees episode #24 for the three hundredth time. I should ask her over the holidays...
Something that both anecdotes fit is the model of not being in adult society or caring much about adult opinions.
I feel religiously opposed to them now when I see how involved people get into those games. I'm all okay with Quake/CounterStrike/Left4Dead type games where you shoot-em-up with a team for a bit and then it's over. Those are good breaks when you've been on a project for hours.
As for twitter, I want to use it as a personal brand vehicle, that and my quora page. So while I agree that it's poison half the time, it's also a great way to engage people and discuss topics that can lead to partnerships/work in the future.
It's hard to find this done well. I tried this myself on Twitter for a few months and realized that, even though I wasn't saying so explicitly, it was bland pathetic performative "I'm an entrepreneur, thinker, innovator, creator, TEDx Speaker" nonsense.
1. log in once; be logged in everywhere
2. no password manager required because you have only one (or maybe a few) logins
disadvantages (I'll just keep numbering to give it unique IDs):
3. if the provider is down, you can't login
4. the provider knows when and where you log in
5. if you decide to delete your account at the provider, you can't log in anymore
6. if the provider decides to delete your account because, say, you bought a fake Nexus (or what was the story recently?) or because you forgot to pay or just because there is a glitch on their end, you've got a problem
7. if your account gets hacked, everything got hacked.
I just don't see how that tiny bit of convenience weighs up to all the issues of having a SPOF whose trustworthiness is questionable to begin with.
+1. I have found that switching to the Dillo web browser (with CSS and at times even images disabled) has considerably decreased the time I spend on Facebook. There was also a command line client for FB, but iirc it's not maintained any more.
So, yes, use an "ugly" browser and you're good. :-)
I'm on vacation now and am experimenting with reducing my phone time dramatically (about 10 minutes a day to respond to texts). I don't carry the phone around with me at all times. It's great -- mentally liberating and actually allows me to completely space out staring off into the distant landscapes, or completely focus on reading/writing.
> Sounds pretty eccentric, doesn't it? It always will when you're trying to solve problems where there are no customs yet to guide you. Maybe I can't plead Occam's razor; maybe I'm simply eccentric. But if I'm right about the acceleration of addictiveness, then this kind of lonely squirming to avoid it will increasingly be the fate of anyone who wants to get things done. We'll increasingly be defined by what we say no to.
I do still check hn more than I should...might have to work on that one next.
127.0.0.1 facebook.com www.facebook.com m.facebook.com twitter.com m.twitter.com www.twitter.com
I found that really helps.
I would hope the solution to your problem is not for me to delete my accounts.
Your problem sounds like you're following people with weak content. Follow new people and stop following (or make better) the weak.
Except for the part where the addicts are confused why you aren't on facebook.
But I think its becoming common enough now that you aren't so much of an aberration
As with all renaming strategies, eventually the new name gets enough tarnish that its either given up, gets yet another new name. There was a pretty concerted push a few years ago to rename everything online as "viral" regardless of the original source and meaning of that name. Wasn't time yet, but soon enough "social media" will be for old people but the cool kids will continue doing the same old thing with a new name.
Anxiety - It's also called FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). If all our friends and family are on Facebook and we don't constantly login and read the feeds, we feel like we are "missing out" on all the fun and exicting stuff going on around us.
Pleasure - Social Media feeds our ego and give us pleasure when we post pics and "updates" and then few minutes later, a RED Icon notification pops up showing that so and so liked your post, commented on it etc. There is a reason why Facebook has no DISLIKE button. Don't forget 'Zuck' is a Psychology Minor.
Related Reading: "What is driving people to constantly check in with social media" => https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/rewired-the-psychology-...
The longer version (9 minutes) of this argument: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYYuiWP0IpA
There are hacks to mitigate some of the negative effects, which pre-date FB et al. You might carry a photo of a loved one, and that's enough to trigger that part of your brain that craves contact. You might have a pet or a "companion animal" as they are called these days. Children (and some adults) have meta-pets - stuffed toy animals.
FB quite deliberately leverages these urges - it is designed to trigger all the fear-of-being-outside-the-tribe that evolution gave you. Why does it tell you that all your friends are at an event, say? To make you feel like you should have been paying more attention to FB so you could have gone too..
People want to feel like they are part of a group.
Being social is a good thing. However companies have figured out they need addictive properties in order to be successful. I previously worked on optimizing companies for user engagement and the addictive properties naturally fall out of the process. If social media satiates your desires you will actually use them less. Think about it; why are your keys always in the last place you look? Because once you find them you stop looking. If you want to keep people on your site you hide their keys. People love a challenge and will be even happier when they find them.
It's particularly bad with modern (low information) news media. I'm a compulsive news junkie* so I have to avoid the news in order to get anything done. I quit facebook and google over their insistence on pushing 'news'. It's junk food for the brain. It's low information and only gives an illusion of being informed. E.g. the recent election.
* Note: I consider HN to be social 'media' news and I am aware that I'm here 'chipping'. I do so intentionally in effort to avoid fettishising vices. Plus HN is as close as I get to an online group of peers. I only use HN after self-flagellating while repeatedly muttering "the flesh is weak".
Is this a real thing?
EDIT - I actually found it, "Reddit is probably the world's largest group of people that communicate while shitting.": https://www.reddit.com/r/Showerthoughts/comments/5dqufr/redd...
But then again, the smartphone simply is that important for many of us. For me, it's a device that's always with me, second only to my own clothes. I may leave a wallet behind, but for sure I'm taking my phone with me. I don't usually think consciously why is that, but some reasons would be:
- the phone is what enables telepathy; if someone wants to reach you with their thoughts over large distances, you have to have the phone with you to receive it (and to respond)
- the Internet-enabled phone also lets me look up answers to random questions that pop up in my head; since the questions pop up randomly and either go away or take real estate in the brain until answered, I want to be able to answer them ASAP anywhere I am and whatever I'm doing
Unless you spend 5 minutes finding the phone first.
This is all that I need to have learned to quit* social media.
*I still use a Facebook, but I don't post anything, and I don't read anything. It is handy for the messenger though to keep in contact with friends that you might see again, such as when travelling.
That is actually very interesting analogy! And when I think about my facebook browsing habits, it only makes sense. Of course it has a flow an rhythm. Something interesting I engage with, a bunch of filler I scroll through, another interesting post. If all that is interesting to me is crammed into the top of the page, that would drop the metrics. Less vertical space used, less ads, less time on site (biggie with investors, I'm sure). Probably get fatigued much faster too. Consume even less interesting stuff than the "long format". I wonder if it is really beneficial (at least to them) in the long term or it is one of those things not worth maximizing (metrics vs. reasons ).
Do you have any interesting reading/watching/listening material from your old jobs? What are you up to these days?
I don't teach 'defence against the dark arts' as the techniques are more likely to be exploited if more widely known and I'd rather not help it spread. Thankfully we're already seeing a cultural pushback with people logging off. I expect to see much more of that in the future as society gets better at understanding addiction and individuals get better at optimizing for their own happiness.
As for me; I have my own software product company now and I am free to optimise for the user. I don't need the money but I do like making the world a better place.
After being a news addict for years, I've decided to not only limit my social media posts (and reading) down to zero, but also the amount of time I spend on the daily news sites (NYT, Guardian, Politico etc). Instead I read media that operates on a longer cycles like weekly (Economist, NewYorker) and longer (Foreign Affairs, Private Eye)
Its been an interesting experiment: most "news" is just content that is ultimately inconsequential, discussing ephemeral events that will be forgotten by the next news cycle.
However, the weeklies and the monthlies, because they have to edit what they write about, do a great job of filtering out the fluff and giving me a better perspective of what mattered that week/month.
I've found I still know what I need to know, suffer much less distractions, and more time to read books (amazing invention btw!)
Side note: it sounds like adding the occasional dose of /r/tldr + /r/outoftheloop would add quite nicely to the "filtering".
News is essentially free (and commoditized). What I value is thoughtful analysis and good interviews; Andrew Marr's interview with Marine Le Pen being a recent case in point.
Have see some humorous attempts such as http://www.chorewars.com/ and http://code.rpgify.com/ but usually with a focus on motivating groups of people.
Tracking my friends stripped a lot of the romance, joy. and mystery out of reconnecting.
Around the same time I got into a new group of friends that were all about their 'personal brand.' Every occasion was started with a good ten minutes of silence while they checked-in to Yelp, Foursquare, snapped photos of the venue / table / food, and tweeted bullshit along the lines of 'having the time of my life!' -- I spent the time looking for typos and leading errors on the menus. It was exhausting. Everybody was there, but nobody was present. Even the meal itself was dull because of the endless obsession with creating something it wasn't.
I never bought into those bullshit games of 'put your phone in the middle of the table' or whatever. If you're a typical human being, my expectation is that you can silence your phone and have the slightest bit of restraint to avoid looking at it every few minutes. I understand if there's an emergency or whatever, but otherwise, keep it on vibrate and be done.
Around this time I completely disabled all notifications and the phone never made a peep.
A few years after that I starting tracking how many images and tweets I was reading vs enjoying. It was about one in twenty or so.
Examining my own tweets and other contributions to social media had me realizing that I was as social as a guy at a party shouting opinions over the music to a room full of people doing the same. It wasn't social, and it was barely media.
I decided to purge the accounts and start from scratch -- and will be doing so every year or so. Starting fresh is nice, but I find that I rarely have anything of actual value to contribute.
I've avoided facebook for years and only use it for events. Instagram is all kids. Twitter is all business and 'I'm speaking at x conference --- here's a link to an instagram post of a photo of a slide in my presentation taken from the back row'. I've avoided the graphic design sites like dribbble where most 'portfolios' aren't filled with client work or art, just 99designs level work that is good, but irrelevant... and the list goes on.
Social media isn't completely dead, but for me, I checked out a long time ago.
I'm hoping that the next wave will be a hybrid of twitter, meetup, foursquare, and tinder --- an app where you check into a location to say 'I'm here, who wants to hang out?' and you can hang out with some strangers for a time.
I don't know why, I find people doing the same but playing games instead are less annoying.
An ex of mine has a young boy who she treated more as a mannequin than anything. She'd get angry if I didn't take a Vogue-level portrait of her posing with an ice cream cone. It was exhausting --- and to what end? To get a higher Klout score?
Online social apps should be focused on improving the offline world.
> I’ve never had a social media account.
He basically summarized that procrastination is harmful and social media is to blame. He doesn't really share anything I haven't known as a social media addict. Kinda like saying to a smoker that smoking tobacco causes cancer. I know that, what now? I tried shutting down social media sites with plugins, blocking sites in the hostfile and other slow to circumvent things. They kinda worked, sometimes never. I also noticed that if a site gets shut down, something new emerges that replace it.
This is something you have to deal with, regulate it. If you find yourself constantly opening FB, Twitter or whatever your addiction is, then it signals that something you are having problems with something you should be really doing.
>I think many more people should follow my lead and quit these services
You can't quit something if you never started using it.
> There are many issues with social media, from its corrosion of civic life to its cultural shallowness, but the argument I want to make here is more pragmatic: You should quit social media because it can hurt your career."
> Perhaps more important, however, than my specific objections to the idea that social media is a harmless lift to your career, is my general unease with the mind-set this belief fosters.
Just talk to me like a person! Unless you're Slavoj Žižek you should probably go for something more accessible and conversational.
For what it's worth, the author of the article has written multiple best-selling books for popular audiences.
Meaning: social media forms a global hive mind. It determines what a lot of people see and hear about the world. Witness the flare up recently over the influence of “fake news” going viral.
A neuron's role, as one tiny piece of a brain, a neural network, or, for my purposes, a hive mind, is to take in a number of inputs and filter them, firing occasionally to convey some distillation of the inputs received.
Anyone who reshares highly inaccurate or incendiary content is being a bad neuron.
If instead you gather a range of news and opinion from a variety of sources and then, being very selective, reshare the one or two things each day (or week) with the best combinations of reputability, newsworthiness, timeliness, importance to current problems society is facing, and exploration of new ideas, then you're being a good neuron.
This in my opinion is the best use of publicly shared social media. If lots of people did this the world would be better off.
There may be career risk in sharing things related to politics, but that's a risk I'm willing to take. Without the freedom to do that, I might as well be in a repressive totalitarian society, and now more than ever that is something we should fight to prevent.
"My second objection concerns the idea that social media is harmless. Consider that the ability to concentrate without distraction on hard tasks is becoming increasingly valuable in an increasingly complicated economy. Social media weakens this skill because it’s engineered to be addictive. The more you use social media in the way it’s designed to be used — persistently throughout your waking hours — the more your brain learns to crave a quick hit of stimulus at the slightest hint of boredom."
I know it is a newspaper article and not an academic paper but I still need evidence to make me believe these claims are true. I've read people claiming that we are becoming more distracted but I haven't read that the ability to not be distracted is becoming more valuable. Similarly, while I've read claims that social media is addictive but not that it is engineered to be so.
Recommend reading up on the "Hook Model" - http://www.nirandfar.com/hooked - or watch this video - https://youtu.be/oQBsnSC_TRM - the techniques for building addictive products are well known, with a history that goes back to Las Vegas and the gambling industry.
Most social media companies - with the exception of one or two like Zynga - of course aren't overly announcing "we're building stuff to get you addicted" but their business depends on audience numbers so guess what: try searching LinkedIn jobs for "Facebook" and "psychology" and it's pretty clear
You probably shouldn't indulge at work, but in some careers it may effectively be required.
Most people learn moderation, but some may have to cut themselves off.
I ended up adding Facebook, Twitter,9gag, Reddit and other sites to my /etc/hosts (0.0.0.0). Was the only way to fix it.
While I work I leave my phone at a distant table, with notifications turned down. The only thing that I get are phone calls.
I remember Simon Sinek saying something like: "if there's a person that the first thing he does when he wakes up in the morning is drinking a glass of whiskey, you'd say he's an alcoholic". What does that make you if the first thing you do when you wake up is checking Facebook?
Here's another way to put it - "If the first thing a person does when they get up is eat, you'd say they're a glutton". True?
(Or indeed "if the first thing a person does when they get up is go to the toilet, you'd say they're incontinent.")
You're right that this one thing alone doesn't spell addiction, but if someone talked about how they should use the bathroom less, felt bad about how many times a day they went, and annoyed everyone by the bathroom constantly being occupied and the person being absent/late due to their use, in addition to using it first thing in the morning, then... maybe they're addicted to social media and using the bathroom as a way to get their fix ;)
I like that fix! I tried to limit myself awhile ago by getting a chrome plugin to limit my access to only lunchtime... but I would simply get around it by opening firefox instead :(
Twitter and Snapchat, on the other hand....
(I feel old)