Some interesting research finds that social media services, such as Facebook and Twitter, are more difficult to resist than more common demons, such as alcohol or cigarettes. (See the story here.)
So that’s why you had to watch the Super Bowl last week, tweeting all the way. Or maybe that’s why you were so busy checking your friends’ statuses the last time you went out with them.
A team from the University of Chicago studied people in Wurtzburg, Germany, to see the addictive properties of social media and other vices. What they found was people succumbed to Facebook, Twitter and the rest more than any other vice, in part because it didn’t “cost much” to participate in social media, researcher Wilhelm Hofmann said.
I saw this earlier in the week and thought it was interesting, but it seemed really relevant after listening to an NPR interview with George Clooney on Thursday afternoon. He laughed about how often he reaches his hand out to shake someone’s hand but can’t, as the fan has a cell phone out to take pictures. Instead of experiencing the moment, they’re too busy trying to record the moment.
I think we’re all guilty of this when it comes to social media. We’ll be out and about with friends, yet someone’s too busy checking into FourSquare to actually enjoy the conversation. Or a perfectly good moment’s ruined by someone taking a photo for memory’s sake, just to be tossed in another album on Facebook.
My wife and I have our Valentine’s Day date this weekend. My goal is to go social media-free throughout our time together, to break that cycle and enjoy the moment. Then again, if she has to use the restroom, you can guarantee I’ll be catching up on my fix…