Sunday, March 22, 2015

Texting Makes You Selfish

And less trusting.

All the screen-time is said to effectively rewire your cognitive and emotional processes, especially among the young.

At the Washington Post, "Texting has made us less trusting, more selfish":
Virtual distance is a game-changer when it comes to human relations. When technology is used as an agent for relationships, in some cases it can be beneficial. However when technology is used purposelessly as a default it doesn’t just squeeze out sophisticated interpersonal interactions, it changes the nature of what’s left.

Purposeful use of technology can support children’s learning but when technology becomes either a substitute or a proxy for relationships, language development in children can be held back. Communication becomes the transfer of impersonal information instead of the sharing of a passion. This can have an impact on language development for kids, but it can have affects on other aspects of our lives.

Taking a risk and having a go at that tricky math problem seems more difficult when a child is on their own than when with a friend. More so sticking with a difficult task (a real gym-buddy is more effective than an app).

These kinds of skills – self discipline, ethical understanding and interpersonal communication, as well as social ability, and critical thinking (among others) – are what UNESCO calls “transversal competencies.” And they can be impaired through virtual distance.

When the ripple effects of actions and inactions seem to go no further than the screen, empathy and collaborative skills can be difficult to develop. For example, children seem to have trouble looking into other people’s eyes and are less able to hold conversations.

As connectivity increases, connectedness can lose out...