Some of the major points-
Social media sites are used by 1/3 or the world Brains scans show degradation of white matter in areas of emotional processing, attention, and decision making.
Users of social medial become less able to multitask.
Dopamine release in talking about our own views rewards more self-involvement.
Partners who meet online may have a more successful relationship than those who meet in person for the first time. May.
Huffpost, on "The Shallows: What The Internet Is Doing To Our Brain," by Nicholas Carr
Internet is an interruption system. It seizes our attention only to scramble it.
The internet may change your brain in the same way as addiction.
Some internet users may be more lonely or jealous.
May increase risk of teen suicide
And most significant to me, because my workplace operates largely via intranet that has similar properties -Even a rather typical session of social media browsing can lead to information overload and make it harder to file away information in your memory... A 2009 study from Stanford University suggests that the brains of people who are constantly bombarded with several streams of electronic information -- from instant messaging to blogs -- may find it difficult to pay attention and switch from one job to another efficiently.
"When they're in situations where there are multiple sources of information coming from the external world or emerging out of memory, they're not able to filter out what's not relevant to their current goal," Dr. Anthony Wagner, an associate professor of psychology at Stanford, said in a written statement. "That failure to filter means they're slowed down by that irrelevant information."
This infographic via singularityhubcom "how social media is ruining your mind"
We only live once. Thriving in this life - or as Ingersoll states, in part - "Happiness is the only good.... Wisdom is the science of happiness" - we can either passively ride along in this virtual carnival in our brains, filled with distractions but no substance, addicted but never sated... or learn how to prosper mentally and emotionally in a changed infomational and interpersonal world. I don't know what that will entail.
I truly miss libraries. I used to love going to the pulblic library and researching a topic, or browsing the newspapers for in depth articles around the world. True, it's now at our fingertips, but "in depth" is more challenging.
My goals / strategies.-
Avoid click-bait. Even is something looks like "oh that might be interesting", it is likely as shallow as an afternoon rain puddle on the sidewalk. And leads to more click bait. This is the "oh - shiny!" syndrome. I know I can do better, if I am aware and have even a trace of self discipline.
If a site blocks me because I have a popup blocker, that tells me they are not worth using. So I won't.
I try to avoid comment flow on most news sites. There is no end to how disappointed and frustrated those imbeciles make me feel. They get their little rocks off by spewing their little thoughtlets (see above on brain hormones), fine, but I don't have to read them.
Real information is still power. You don't give credibility to a drunk or stoned drug addict. No reason to give it to someone who is stoned on changes in dopamine, oxytocin, and adrenalin, and whose brains are addled by twitter and facebook.
If I'm too tired to actually read, I listen to audiobook instead of browsing the internet. The sound of some human voices is reassuring, and conveys more useful information than the easier internet browsing.
There are probably many more strategies for brain health in the internet age. Using the internet where is serves us, and avoiding it where it doesn't. Those are the thoughts that come first to me. Nexus is pretty low key when it comes to flash and "oh shiny" - it doesn't distract me too much from the mental and social interactions.
Patricia, I feel like I see the shortened attention span everywhere, sometimes in myself. I don't like it and keep tabs on that.
I see myself becoming more forgetful and losing objects. I did a pre-order on locator tiles that can be attached to anything, but they are in the development stage. I don't know if that's me getting older, cancer treatment, or how much I do on the internet, and work pressure.
I think it's important to be mindful of things that affect our minds. How else do we nurture ourselves? The only one how has motivation to make sure we thrive, is us.
Many people have tried to convince me that they can work, write or read in a room full of people with music on, tv on, children on, talk going on... I can't. I'd go mad and get nothing done. My ideal work day passes in silence; then I can do loads of work and not get tired very quickly. And decluttering definitely helps a lot!
I agree Chris. My mother claims she works on things like genealogy better with the TV on, but I doubt it. I know I can't concentrate on anything with something else going on, even bland music.
You guys are reminding me to be obsessed with the Beatles song "When I'm 64," as it's creeping up on me next month. It was funny when Sgt. Pepper's came out. Who would have thought it would actually be here this fast? I too have to make lists to remind me of just about everything. It could be partly digital erosion of attention span, or just being a child of the 60s. I don't own a TV, so there's one source of brain rot I've escaped. As my 83-year-old aunt in Sarasota says, "If you can't find your keys, you don't have a problem. If you forget what they're for, you have a problem.
Bertold, I like what your aunt says. My memory has always been bad, so I haven't worried about It as I've gotten older. However, in the last few months, my short-term memory seems to be getting much worse. Either that, or I'm getting more annoyed with it.
One development that has significantly degraded the internet is clickbait.
Click bait is a gotcha headline with no actual indication of what the story is. They use a annoying, attention-grabbing, animated gif's, and once the reader thinks, "Oh this might be interesting. I've never been lead down the garden path before", click on the article, and the advertiser pays the site based on the number of clicks. The article may be completely unoriginal, brief, and piled up with advertising - which is it's only purpose. This is a deceitful form of spam, and eventually maybe people will catch on and stop clicking. Is there any evidence that click bait is a cost effective method to increase sales? I don't know.
Another form of click bait is the "list article". "10 Ways Kim Kardashian is a better mother than you are!!!", or "These adorable puppies will blow your mind!!!", (I made these up) with a new click required to load each new photo or item on the list. With each new click leading to payment by the advertisers to the site, and of course additional ads. There are so many news sites that divide their articles up based on list clicks, it must be an entirely new genre by now
From wiktionary, "
1.(Internet marketing, pejorative) Website content that is aimed at generating advertising revenue, especially at the expense of quality or accuracy, relying on sensationalist headlines to attract click-throughs; such headlines.
I don't know of any studies on how click bait might degrade thinking, undermine credibility, increase cynicism, worsen mistrust in journalism, take away loyalty from otherwise legit news sites.
I've been going to CNN less and less, avoiding the footers of online magazines, which are usually nothing but click bait. If a site has too much click bait, I usually decide that site shouldn't be trusted and quit going there. I try to avoid the degradation of my thought processes and waste of time.
Ohhh - another cute dog video!
OK, there are no absolutes in the world.
Speaking of clickbait, it was good to see CNN get burned a bit when they chose to run the Michael Sam's showering habits story. First a teammate wrote them that "Everyone but you is over this." Then the Rude Pundit nailed them to the wall.
Well, reading this comment is another five minutes I will never get back.
Daniel, you have more good information here. I have never heard of "click bait", but you are right, I click on it and find mush! I do agree however, cute dog photos are difficult to pass up.
Animated gifs are so annoying to me, I never click on them. The same with ads that cover what I'm trying to read. I've also stopped clicking on things that use superlatives, like "The most....", or "The best...." They're usually just the opposite.
I am still suckered into clicking on some interesting-looking things and am usually disappointed.
I'm going to try what you do. Not trust the site and quit going there.