Whatever the forces are that make people do dumb things, they are powerful, they are often invisible, and they lurk even in the best of environments.*
Seth Godin writes about when smart phones aren’t so smart:
‘Teaching complicated ideas to people on a phone is like trying to teach geography to a bunch of sugared-up kids who just had a triple espresso, while they are standing on one foot being bitten by a swarm of mosquitos.’**
Mix this with what Rohit Bhargava identifies as the trend of “manipulated outrage” – when information is shared in a way to incite outrage and anger – and you have a very dangerous concoction. It doesn’t matter whether the information is true or false, its whether people believe it is.
Godin also spots this dangers and his suggestion is to go to a larger screen:
‘There could be a direct correlation between smart phone usage and underinformed mass behavior.
Sometimes it’s worth opening up a laptop and slowing down just a bit.
Yes, opening up a laptop might count as slowing down a bit.’**
There’s also the option of no screen – which is the biggest screen possible, and possibly the one that will make the most difference as we seek to make progress as humans. It’s also the slowest one, allowing us to listen and watch and interact most carefully and caringly in order to notice the connections to everything and everyone:
“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.”^
(*From Ed Catmull’s Creativity, Inc..)
(**From Seth Godin’s blog: On one foot.)
(^John Muir, quoted in Ben Hardy’s These 20 Pictures Will Teach You More Than Reading 100 Books.)