Monday, March 26, 2012

The Net shortens attention spans

We've talked a bit about how how, seemingly, the Net shortens attention spans. Or at least such a phenomenon has come about remarkably coincidentally with the rise of the Net.
Timo wrote this on the subject:

The shortening of attention span for Internet users is caused by dopamine addiction.

Discovering new information, i.e. an interesting site/page, gives a "rush" caused by the release of dopamine, the body's feel good chemical. Over time, you get desensitised to this "euphoric" effect, making you want to experience it more often.  Clicking your mouse then effectively becomes a dopamine release switch.

Except when you click only to find spam or some otherwise uninteresting information.  This results in withdrawal symptoms, making you want to click your mouse even more in order to get your fix.

So, if, upon discovering and interesting page, you find that you end up reading only the ingress of it, and then already feel the need to search for some other interesting information, you are addicted.

The key here is that the dopamine rush happens at the point of  discovery. Not when actually consuming the information.


Steve Green said...

I know this only too well. Currently I am on the net looking for dopamine instead of doing my study. Maybe I'll go for a walk.

Russ said...

Why do you think they call it dope-amine? ;-)

Pascal [P-04referent] said...

That's a load of baloney. The net doesn't, erm, stuff, and, uh, well, it's NOT bad liek sqwer ppl keep sayin 'round me, so there. GTG, my pants need ironing B4 i go to work. I'm a senior employee @ a major fast food joint in Bikini Bottom. And my loser colleague plays the clarinet, bubbles always come out of it when he does that, lol. I swear, that dude's got no spine. Unlike my driving licence inspector. Or is that spikes? After all, she IS a blowfish (blow fish? go fish?). Neat, 5 of spades, just the card I needed. Wanna cuppa? It's my own blend, I call it Coffee Annan.

Anonymous said...

Training Wheels

Ugly everything temporary.
He’s like a fashion model.
I’m not going anywhere.
Cut it off
The frontline.
Don’t start everything right,
Here you know,
Not the pen and ink
Got married.
I’m so smart –
So short means:
I wanna put this in the incinerator
To eat.
Have spaghetti
No meat balls,
Fried shrimp,
One piece.
Let ‘im oar.
That’s how yah
Find out what matters,
Find out what happened.
Are you comin’ with me?
If you will hand it over.
My attention span
Not what it used to be.
I’m gunna help.
What do you say?
What are we waiting for?
Look who’s here,
Your thinking
Points of view.

There’s some new fish
Operating on the windows.
I’m a fish.
Don’t get angry.
It’s a trap:
That’s how much a subscription costs,
One fifth of your brain power.
Think you can do it,
Cover his adventures,
Use some coffee.
I thought I’d just hope for a second.
Very nice,
We certainly went out.
We did a little.
That’s it,
Pull the rabbit.
One more thing,
If you don’t hear from me
The government
Tackle it.
It just kills me.
Gotta go.

A poet in India read.
Why should we read?
Had the lipstick on
For a better future than what we have now.
Advanced search option,
You’ll be alright.
Did I know that guy?
How could he get here?
The net Jay jihad push,
It’s the horror.
Are you kidding me?
Check this out:
I got an idea
Blog worthy,
Put on social media.
We don’t want you to have that idea –
The police.
Do we
Stop this?
Now where’s conscience?
On the count of three roll over.
Why won’t anybody stick,
Stick their neck out?
I am the sound equipment.
Let’s hear it.
And another thing you’re watching.
Don’t you even dare
Say it.
Certain situations
Can’t include here you know.
Just gunna cap it off.
Why don’t you come over life?

Gets yah home.
It’s a long effort.
Don’t skip the reason please,
It’s messed up,
Head count.
Why don’t you leave me alone?
Thank you.
Would you like my toenail clippers?
End the poem.
Oh God.
What did he look like?
Did he look like …
Can we go?
Policeman, pow!
This available?
Wherever you read it.
Jason wasting my time in my tuition dream?
He’s coming into both of them,
Thirty seconds,
Eight hours,
Grand Theft Auto.
That’s the equipment leader.
They want to end the poem.

I’m just lookin’ for a
There’s too many of us,
Too many.
What are we going to do?
Give me that –
The product of the new government.
Who is he?
Go ask yourself.
Careful now,
I’ll bet
We’re under control:
Log in and register to post.
Who’s the new government?
That would be you.
The attention span,
Oh boy,
The pressure is ours.

a poet in India