Watch this PBS documentary: a digital nation. It changed the way I viewed technology. They discuss how the internet has hurt (and helped) relationships, how multitasking is destroying our culture, how we create second lives through the internet, and how pretty soon we’ll be sending our kids to internet addiction camps like they already do in Korea. You really should watch it, I found it fascinating.
As a result, in the last few weeks I’ve began multiple conversations about the value of media in our life: twitter, facebook, google buzz… what is the point of it all? Does it add more value or only distract?
The short conclusion is that I think it adds a lot a value IF properly used. Proper Netiquette (defined: short for network etiquette, the code of conduct regarding acceptable online behavior) must be displayed as well as moderation in all things, including email use. Which is why I felt the need to go on a google chat hiatus for the last two weeks– I was feeling addicted ‘being online’, I felt the compulsion to have some sort of web presence, as weird as that may sound. Some of you may have felt the same way with a different web program.
Feel addicted to youtube videos? Do you constantly think of your actions in terms of something to blog about or update your facebook status with? Can you handle being signed out of your email for a few hours? a few minutes?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the above questions, then I venture to say that it is time to step back. Let’s look at how the web is helping and hurting us, then refine how we use it.
One final thought from Thomas Jefferson: “I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.” I think in some small way, the internet is a powerful form of tyranny over the mind of man. Although I haven’t developed this thought thoroughly. Elder Bednar also had a lot to say on this subject.
I’d appreciate your thoughts.