Is It Still An Addiction If It's Good For You?

from the just-wondering... dept

We've mocked the various researchers who like to call just about every new popular technology an addiction, when there's no real evidence that there are any dependency issues involved. As we've said, these researchers are using the emotional reaction people have to the word "addiction," associating it with chemical dependencies and dangerous and damaging activities. However, what if it turns out that the "addiction" is actually good for you? More than a few times, researchers have warned about the problems of email addiction and referred to portable Blackberry devices as "Crackberries" to play up the supposed addiction. Earlier this week we even wrote about researchers who warned such addictions could lead to legal liabilities for companies who provide their employees Blackberries. Of course, new research today shows that 77% of people with such devices found that they enhanced their work-life balance, rather than impeded it. So, we have to ask, is it still proper to use the emotionally-charged term "addiction" when the net results are most likely to be beneficial? As people have pointed out in the past, we're all "addicted" to things like air and water, but that's not a bad thing. Is the same true of mobile email?

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  1. identicon
    MiniDevil, 25 Aug 2006 @ 10:34am

    Re: Buy the Company Line

    " One of the owners of the company I work for has over 4 GB of e-mail and has to have a new laptop every month. He brags to customers, vendors, and friends about how he's got so much e-mail we're going to have to get a mail server just for him. He shows off his laptop, brags about how it's a "double-crow" (yes, double-crow, not dual core) and has 4 mega-bits of ram. 90% of the e-mail he has stored is spam, junk mail, and chain letters. He can't make a pivot table in excel, or change a formula. He's on his cell phone so much they may have to surgically remove it from his ear. Has technology made him more effective? NO. It just makes him feel more important, it's an ego boost. "

    Nothing you are saying proves that anyone is addicted to anything. Technology links the globe, and provides an even faster paced environment than before.

    Let's face it, over the millennia, there have always been assholes and idiots like your boss which you mentioned above.

    There have always been workaholics. Yes, Yes, that's right, there were workaholics before the computer was even invented.

    So let's just stop placing blame on technology, addiction, or anything else for that matter. People are people. There are idiots, there are assholes, there are pricks, there are workaholics, etc, etc, etc.

    This is all part of society. It is the mere integration of this technology into society which gives newscasters and reporters and analysts things to keep themselves busy. Want a great example?? Here is ANOTHER analyst that is a complete idiot:

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20060824/190154.shtml

    That's right. Pacman is a dangerous game to play. Just like cell phones are dangerous to have. Maybe it's those microwave rays that are affecting the brainwaves of people, causing them to become insane workaholics. Yeah.... Maybe.

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