Isn’t the enemy really all screen time? Unfortunately the more time we spend with the media and screens, the less time we spend with reality.
A solution is to limit our time on all screens. Could you limit your time on screens to 5 hours a week? 10 hours a week? 15 hours a week?
A recent study of teens found that the happiest ones spent 5 hours or less per week on screens. Though they were actually happier than teens who spent no time at all on screens, over 5 hours a week the teens became progressively more and more miserable. I don’t know if there is a study yet involving adults, but perhaps the results would be about the same.
We single out social media because it’s the “worst”. Yet according to the study’s results, yes social media is very bad but the internet (!) and computer games are even worse. They are displacing people’s time with each other and with the real world. Is it the problem the internet and information technology in general?
Why is it such a taboo to be against anything more than a minimal use of the internet and information technology when we have so much documented evidence of its harm? 20 years ago computers were considered the domain of miserable insular nerds. Yet today it seems we’ve all become miserable insensates that are stuck on screens instead of living life.
Today our society and governments are encouraging us to use screens, instead of encouraging us to limit our screen time. Look at how much funding and support there is for creating the “next Silicon Valley”, for computers in schools, for learning to code, for education based on screens. And what is lost is support for the real world and the things people actually enjoy. Are we misguided?