Not this column, my friends – I would never do that to you. But that’s actually a quote from this Canada.com article about our addiction with RIM’s handheld device. The journalist (I don’t even want to say his name, I’m that insulted) says that we won’t even notice the article because we’re too busy with our bowed heads playing BrickBreaker or responding to non-important emails. Well guess what, pal – I get paid to notice.
But the article isn’t all BB user-slighting, thankfully. We get a little credit near the middle when a communication’s professor commends some of us for realizing that we’re becoming too connected. Thanks, Mr. Professor. We’re trying our best.
Purdue University’s Glenn Sparks was intrigued to hear of Mandel’s BlackBerry ban (on BlackBerrys in his council meetings).
Sparks, a communication prof, has for 25 years studied the impact of technology on society.
The public, says Sparks, is beginning to catch on to the implications of our obsession with BlackBerries and their ilk. People spend inordinate amounts of time staring into screens and diminishing amounts of time engaged, face-to-face, with live humans. He calls it the “screen-time phenomenon.”
“The technology has it’s own rhythm and we adjust to that rhythm,” says Sparks. “Once we get accustomed to it, we keep marching to it and hardly know how to stop. We don’t know how to relax and disengage.”
The moral? Users should worry less about repetitive strain injuries, the so-called BlackBerry thumb, and more about BlackBerry psychosis, a disorder of life by e-mail.
The article closes with the same snarky journalist giving us a little tip.
But here’s a friendly BlackBerry tip: If you’re feeling twitchy, excuse yourself and head to the bathroom to check your e-mail.
Waggle your thumbs. Say a prayer. Then flush the damn BlackBerry down the toilet.
Ever hear of a swirly, sir? Our BlackBerrys won’t be the ones going down the toilet if any of our readers ever track you down. Just be sure to tap us on our shoulders, we’ll be the ones going for the high score in BrickBreaker.