Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Computer Addiction Not Rational, Sustainable

The last thing on the mind of any addict is the external costs of their actions. Internet addiction has been with us for years but it has yet to make it into the DSM-V. Email addicts are abundant; theres even a 12-step program specifically designed to help you kick the 'bit. Much of the activity in virtual worlds, such as the ubiquitous sex playgrounds in Second Life, are addiction driven as well.China has taken the lead on addressing the problem, citing it as a grave social problem, and instituting a treatment center that uses fairly severe methods. Msnbc, the original reporter, took their copy of the article down. I hope it has nothing to do with the MS in msnbc... after all, it's addiction we are talking about...

It might sound funny but there are serious costs to these activities. For one, if you are an employer, you may be sued for firing employees that are addicted to online chatting or adult sites. And the green point is this - if your can't shut off your machine, how are you going to conserve power, get out of your three year upgrade cycle, and stop buying a new cell phone every year? Ask yourself - could you really participate in Shutdown Day?

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