Internet Effects: Smartphones Change Human Character and Relationships

We live in the Internet Age and this means that the Internet and accompanying hardware and software alter human character and relationships. Here are a few comments from a New York Review of Books essay, “In the Depths of the Digital Age” that make this point:

“Every technological revolution coincides with changes in what it means to be a human being, in the kinds of psychological borders that divide the inner life from the world outside”.

“Human character changed on or about December 2010, when everyone, it seemed, started carrying a smartphone.  For the first time, practically anyone could be found and intruded upon, not only at some fixed address at home or work, but everywhere and at all times”.

Bernard Harcourt, in Exposed: Desire and Disobedience in the Digital Age, “describes a new kind of psyche that seeks, through its exposed virtual self, satisfactions of approval and notoriety that it can never truly find”.

About georgebeam

George Beam is an educator and author. The perspectives that inform his interpretations of the topics of this blog–-as well as his other writings and university courses -–are system analysis, behaviorism, and Internet effects. Specific interests include quality management, methodology, and politics. He is Associate Professor Emeritus, Department of Public Administration; Affiliated Faculty, Department of Political Science; and, previously, Head, Department of Public Administration, University of Illinois at Chicago
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