On Internet:  


When we go online, we enter an environment that promotes cursory reading, hurried and distracted thinking, and superficial learning.
~ Nicholas Carr.


How the FANG Playbook, Facebook-Amazon-Netflix-Google Playbook works: None of the FANG companies created what most considered the most valuable pieces of their respective ecosystems; they simply made those pieces easier for consumers to access, so consumers increasingly discovered said pieces via the FANG home pages. And, given that Internet made distribution free, that meant the FANG companies were well on their way to having far more power and monetization potential than anyone realized… By owning the consumer entry point — the primary choke point — in each of their respective industries the FANG companies have been able to modularize and commoditize their suppliers, whether those be publishers, merchants and suppliers, content producers, or basically anyone who needs to be found on the Internet.
~ The IT era and the Internet Revolution by Ben Thompson


Once a new technology rolls over you, if you’re not part of the steamroller, you’re part of the road.
~ Stewart Brand


The 21st century is about the management of all the knowledge and information we have generated and the value addition that we can bring to it.
~ APJ Abdul Kalam


The other day, a newspaper writer joined the chorus of angry voices about the bad effects of new technology. “There can be no rational doubt that [it] has caused vast injury.” It is “superficial, sudden, unsifted, too fast for the truth.” The day was in 1858, and the quote was about the telegraph. Similarly, the telephone, radio and television have each in turn been seen as a source of doom.
~ No, Your Children Aren’t Becoming Digital Zombies on WSJ


“What George Orwell prophesied in ‘1984,’ where technology was being used to monitor, control, dictate, or what Aldous Huxley imagined we may do just by distracting ourselves without any meaning or purpose — neither of these futures is something that we want.”
~ Satya Nadella on underscoring the issues of responsibility of those creating new technologies.






Our Modern Lives: 


The splendor of the world begins with the fragility of a lone woman.
~ An anonymous commentator about Océane, a 19 year old French girl who committed suicide while streaming it live on the Periscope app. 


If you’re single, struggling to reconcile the distance that the Internet somehow both creates and closes between potential partners, how better to avoid the social awkwardness of face-to-face interactions and assuage the fear of rejection than by sliding into some hot girl’s DMs, comfortable in the illusion of a personal conversation without actually having one? Perhaps young people are putting off sex in increasing numbers because they’re afraid that when the moment of intimacy actually arrives, they won’t know how to act. Not that the movements won’t come naturally, but that the accompanying emotional vulnerability we assume is supposed to exist will never arise afterward. Since 2008’s economic decline, Millennials have found that delaying most aspects of adulthood is in their best interest. Goldman Sachs reported that so far in the 2010s, the median age for marriage is 30 – seven years later than in the 1970s. In 2012, a very meager 23 percent of 18- to 31-year-olds were married and living in their own households. For the first time in more than 130 years, adults aged 18 to 34 are more likely to live with their parents than with a partner. Overall, Millennials are pushing back the age of adulthood, usually as a reaction to our environment – the difficult-to-crack job market, and the ever-rising cost of rent. Sex is just another step toward becoming an adult that Millennials are avoiding.
~ Inside the Awkward World of Millennial Dating on Rolling Stone.


Austin Gilkeson and his family received an Echo this past Christmas. They became immediately attached to it. They use it to play music, check the weather and field basic questions. Though the novelty of the device has faded, it’s become a daily part of their lives. The Gilkesons aren’t the only ones. There are nearly 54,000 reviews of the Echo on Amazon. Most of them overwhelmingly positive, and most focus not on the device, but instead on Alexa. The current top-rated comment mentions how Alexa is not just the perfect companion but the “perfect spouse.” When reached out for further elaboration on this comment, the commenter did not respond, but the core sentiment it suggests, that “If [he] knew relationships were this easy, [he] would have married thirty years ago, but now that I have Alexa, there’s no need” was deemed “helpful” by over 46,000 people.
~ Can Amazon’s Alexa Be Your Friend? by Aaron Paul Calvin


I tweet, I post, I blog, therefore I am.
~ Dr. Mark Federman


The internet is a F*ing miracle. Its a F*ing miracle. The things that you could be doing with it, the fact that you can be laying F*ing naked in your bed at 2am in the morning and doing productive sh*t is F*ing crazy. Its crazy.
~ Gary Vaynerchuk


“I’ve always wanted Americans to see what’s happening to their country from the comfort of their suburban homes and their smart phones,” Lawless, who lives in Cleveland, told CNNMoney. “I want people to see the beginning of the end of the greatest economic machine that the world has ever seen: America.” “Their communal space is social media,” he said. “They don’t need to go to a mall where they can walk around, meet with people. There’s no need for that large enclosed space.”
~ On the death of mall culture in Autopsy of America: The Death of a Nation by Seph Lawless.


Going out for dinner, calling your mom or going to a party used to be about talking to people, about conversation. But during the last ten years something has shifted. Instead of talking about the food, we post a picture of it online; instead of calling our mother, we send her an email updating her on our lives; and at the party we’re busy showing other people YouTube clips and messaging with friends at a bar instead of talking to other people there. In short, face-to-face conversation is nowhere to be found.
~ Reclaiming Conversation by Sherry Turkle



On Social Media: 


‘I think we have created tools that are ripping apart the social fabric of how society works. The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops we’ve created are destroying how society works. No civil discourse, no cooperation; misinformation, mis-truth. And it’s not an American problem — this is not about Russians ads. This is a global problem.’
~ Chamath Palihapitiya, Former VP of Facebook


“There are two industries that call their customers users: illegal drugs and software.”
~ Quoted from the 2020 Documentary, The Social Dilemma.


I don’t have a kid, but I have a nephew that I put some boundaries on. There are some things that I won’t allow; I don’t want them on a social network.
~ Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Speaking at Harlow college in Essex in Jan, 2018


SnapChat, Instagram and Facebook are venues for group signaling. Signaling goods signal status and affiliation to other “like minded” monkeys. Signaling goods can be physical – handbags, watches and fancy cars. They can be virtual – political, religious, and tribal affiliations. Social media makes it easier to signal wealth via conspicuous consumption of goods like food, travel and clothing. Editorial outrage is a signaling good. News outlets have switched from facts to opinions and outrage. Social media has degenerated into a deafening cacophony of groups signaling and repeating their shared myths.
~ Naval Ravikant


Facebook literally changes your relationship with society, with each other. It probably interferes with productivity in weird ways. God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains. It’s a social-validation feedback loop… exactly the kind of thing that a hacker like myself would come up with, because you’re exploiting a vulnerability in human psychology. The inventors, creators … understood this consciously, and we did it anyway.
~ Sean Parker, Facebook’s first president


How we use social media and how we decide to use social media is the key. Social media is a blank canvas and we’re the ones painting it. If we don’t like what we see on it, I challenge you to change what you put on social media. Because you’re the ones filling it with content.
~ Cliff Lampe



On Children: 


Nearly one in twelve 13 year olds are afraid that they’re addicted to porn. Why? Because they can’t stop thinking about it. They can’t stop thinking about searching for a new video, watching a new experience, seeing something that they haven’t seen before. They’re looking for more and they’re looking for different. They can’t help it, because that’s how brains work.
~ On porn addiction in teens by Ben Halpert


In 2010, a New York Times reporter, Nick Bilton had a conversation that revealed a lot about the life of the founder of Apple, Steve Jobs. Bilton commented, “Your kids must love the iPad, right?” After the launch of the device. Jobs replied, “They haven’t used it. We limit the amount of technology our children use at home. “

“Every night Steve insisted on dining at the big kitchen table, talking about books, history and a variety of other things. Nobody ever took out an iPad or a computer. The kids didn’t seem addicted to the devices.”
~ Walter Isaacson, the author of the Steve Jobs biography


What’s wrong with multitasking?
If teens are, on average, spending nine hours a day consuming media, it’s not such a surprise they’re often doing it while doing their homework. Half of teens say they “often” or “sometimes” use social media or watch TV while doing their homework. Some 60% say they text and more than 75% say they listen to music while working on schoolwork at home. And of the kids who multitask, most don’t think it effects the quality of their work. Nearly two-thirds say watching TV or texting makes no difference and more than 50% feel the same way when it comes to social media. “Teenagers think that multitasking during homework doesn’t affect their ability to learn and … we know it does,” said Steyer, citing studies such as one at Stanford, which found dramatic differences in cognitive control and the ability to process information between heavy media multitaskers and light media multitaskers. “It’s completely obvious that you can’t multitask and be as effective and competent.”
~ Teens spend a ‘mind-boggling’ 9 hours a day using media, report says on CNN.


What we’re actually doing is creating an entire generation of mini little addicts that are getting hardwired to believe that their sense of self worth and their sense of coping comes from a device and not from another human being.
~ On device addiction in adolescents by Simon Sinek.



On Distraction: 


There’s been a lot of attention devoted to how technology is scattering our attention and corroding our relationships, but less to how it’s impairing our capacity for solitude. We’re so overstimulated that being alone has become unbearable—a fact that was highlighted in a series of studies from 2014, where people preferred giving themselves electric shocks rather than sitting still alone in a room for 6 to 15 minutes. In the lab, we shock ourselves; in real life, we reach for our phones in a lecture hall, in line—even when we’re driving.
~ Emily Esfahani Smith is the author of The Power of Meaning: Crafting a Life that Matters.


If you’re driving 55 miles an hour, and look down at your phone for 5 seconds, you’ve just now driven the length of an entire football field completely blind.
~ Allison Graham


There are 4 major repercussions of over use of technology.
1. Increase in anxiety.
2. Decrease in our ability to attend and focus for extended periods of time.
3. Boredom.
4. New found ability to be unable to talk to anyone face to face.
~ Dr. Larry Rosen, The Distracted mind: Ancient brains in a high-tech world.



On Productivity: 


Here’s a digital curation strategy: Actively seek out and enthusiastically embrace technologies that provide core value. Be selective about technologies that provide you minor value and place boundaries around how and when you use them. Avoid technologies that can only provide you invented value (your life is too important to be a gadget in some random start-up’s growth plan).
~ On Value and Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport


The productivity paradox: People are worried about robots taking jobs. Driverless cars are around the corner. Restaurants and shops increasingly carry the option to order by touchscreen. Google’s clever algorithms provide instant translations that are remarkably good. But the economy does not feel like one undergoing a technology-driven productivity boom. In the late 1990s, tech optimism was everywhere. At the same time, wages and productivity were rocketing upward. The situation now is completely different. The most recent jobs reports in America and Britain tell the tale. Employment is growing, month after month after month. But wage growth is abysmal. So is productivity growth: not surprising in economies where there are lots of people on the job working for low pay. Continued high levels of employment with weak growth in wages and productivity is not evidence of disappointing technological progress; it is what you’d expect to see if technological progress were occurring rapidly in a world where thin safety nets mean that dropping out of the labour force leads to a life of poverty.
~ Ryan Avent



On Addiction: 


According to neuroscientist Claire Gillian of Cambridge University, behaviors can stimulate the same areas of the brain that drugs like heroin and cocaine stimulate – and this includes many behaviors that take place online, such as playing video games, engaging in sex chats and gambling. In all of these circumstances, the neurotransmitter dopamine is released in the brain, which in turn sets off a feeling of intense pleasure. But this initial pleasure gradually decreases when the behavior is repeated. This causes people to make the addiction worse by spending more and more time online, in a futile attempt to recapture that first great dopamine high.
~ From Irresistible by Adam Alter


Men are more susceptible to compulsive behavior with online/video gaming, cyberporn and online gambling, while women are more likely to become addicted to sexting, texting, social media, eBay and online shopping.
~ On technology addiction by Dr. Kimberly Young


Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important.
~ Bill Gates


“I don’t think any man or woman on his or her deathbed ever wished he or she had spent more time sending IMs or playing online poker, either. But hell, I could be wrong,”
~ Stephen King.


* * *


About The Article Author:

Our mission with FutureSTRONG Academy – to grow children who respect themselves, their time and their capabilities in a world where distractions are just a click or a swipe away.

I see myself as an advocate for bringing social, emotional and character development to families, schools and communities. I never want to let this idea out of my sight – Our children are not just GPAs. I’m a Writer and a Certified Master Coach in NLP and CBT. Until 2017, I was also a Big Data Scientist. In December of 2044, I hope to win the Nobel. Namasté

Write to me or call me. Tell me what support from me looks like. 

Rachana Nadella-Somayajula,
Program Director & Essential Life Skills Coach for Kids and Busy Parents

The Digital Literacy Project: Disrupting humanity’s technology addiction habits one truth at a time.

Truth About Technology – A Digital Literacy Project


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