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Social network sites risk infantilising the mid-21st century mind, leaving it characterised by short attention spans, sensationalism, inability to empathise and a shaky sense of identity, according to a leading neuroscientist.
The startling warning has led the government to admit work on internet regulation has not extended to broader issues, such as the psychological impact Facebook, Bebo, Twitter, MySpace and other social networking sites have on children.
...children's experiences on social networking sites "are devoid of cohesive narrative and long-term significance. As a consequence, the mid-21st century mind might almost be infantilised, characterised by short attention spans, sensationalism, inability to empathise and a shaky sense of identity".
Arguing that social network sites are putting attention span in jeopardy, she said: "If the young brain is exposed from the outset to a world of fast action and reaction, of instant new screen images flashing up with the press of a key, such rapid interchange might accustom the brain to operate over such timescales. Perhaps when in the real world such responses are not immediately forthcoming, we will see such behaviours and call them attention-deficit disorder.
"It might be helpful to investigate whether the near total submersion of our culture in screen technologies over the last decade might in some way be linked to the threefold increase over this period in prescriptions for methylphenidate, the drug prescribed for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder."
She also warned against "a much more marked preference for the here-and-now, where the immediacy of an experience trumps any regard for the consequences.
Originally posted by jdub297
It seems that the combination of anonymity, instant gratification, and exclusion of opposing or contrary influences may make social networking an imposing shaper of normal social and interactive skills.
Do we see that even here? Does that explain the disregard of spelling and grammar? Deletion of posts as "off-topic" or "inappropriate?"
If so, how do we ourselves, and our children, face the threat and take steps to avoid such myopia and antisocialization?
Originally posted by pieman
i'm sure the catholic church pushed the same agenda when some upstart in germany came up with moveable type.
information that isn't controlled by the traditional authorities is threat to the traditional authorities.
they said the same about cinema, newspapers, tv, radio, books and probably writing at some point, it's just "blah blah blah, new stuff is scarey!!!!".
inability to empathise and a shaky sense of identity