Recently, I watched a show on CNBC about “Crackberry” addicts (also known as technology addicted people). As a self-proclaimed technology addict, I was sucked-in immediately. I have always been aware of my addiction, and if I forgot it even for a second, my father would remind me with a comment similar to, “You really can’t put that phone down for a second, can you?”
No, dad, I can’t.
I have come to realize that although my peers of my generation probably don’t realize it, this is absolutely not good. Our generation is one raised in a world in which having computers and smart-phones at our fingertips , and wireless internet in ice rinks is completely normal. We don’t realize how completely addicted we are because, well, everyone is addicted. The show on CNBC highlighted several of the huge issues with our generations’ growing addiction. One, we can’t focus. I can attest to this. I’m constantly checking my phone while doing homework, or logging-on to Facebook and Twitter while writing a paper (because there has to be some kind of breaking social news since I checked not even five minutes ago, right?). Tasks that should take say, 30 minutes, take an hour, maybe more. Not good!
Another issue is our awareness. We have no idea what’s going on around us. In the show, this was proven when a clown on a unicycle rode through a college campus (where students were, of course, on their phones). Less than 5 percent of the students using their phones/laptops, etc. noticed the very unusual clown. Woah. So then what aren’t we noticing?
Think about it. Have you ever run into someone because you were on your phone? Almost been run over by a car? TEXTED WHILE DRIVING? I’m guilty of all of these.
Crackberry.com, a website for Blackberry owners or “users and abusers” as they call us, has a list of questions that enable you to know if you’re addicted, a few are:
Do you find yourself checking your Blackberry even if there is no new e-mail or notification?
Do you use your Blackberry in the bathroom?
Have you ever checked your Blackberry while at a meal with others?
Do you check your Blackberry at stoplights?
Do you spend more than 30 minutes per day using your Blackberry?
These questions can apply to any technology. If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, your’e probably an addict.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not condemning everyone who is constantly connected. There are huge benefits to our constant connectivity. BUT I think we could all serve to have just a little bit less of it.
I have decided to challenge myself, as well as you, to be less addicted. Don’t obsessively check your phone. Leave it in your bag when you’re in class, on silent. We’re in school to learn, not to constantly refresh Facebook and Twitter.
Ready, set, go!