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Electronic vs. old fashioned media


This is something the Monarch and I have debated on and off - and especially now that we are raising a little one in this new world of electronic media!

I just started a book called The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains by Nicholas Carr (2010) and I'm already intrigued. The first chapter is discussing how people believe (and there are studies to back it up) that the way they think has been fundamentally changed by their internet usage. Many previous 'book hounds' now confess that they can no longer sit and concentrate long enough to read a real book. Some even went as far as to say it's a waste of time to read a book cover to cover - just find the snippets you are interested in online and skim those!

As a person who loves to (and still can) read a lengthy book, I find this incredibly disturbing! Before the Monarch moved in I didn't have any electronic media at home - no TV, no internet, and actually no computer. I do find that my free time has changed but perhaps not my actual way of thinking (yet...)

Anyway, I thought I would just open up a conversation about this and see what other people have experienced and what you think about it. I'll keep posting tidbits from the book (so you don't have to waste your time reading it! emoticon )
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Justbec Profile
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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


Well I don't think I could live without TV, radio and TV but there are times, especially on weekends when Nick is outside that I will just turn it all off. I like the quiet. As for reading, I found your post disturbing. I love nothing better than curling up with a good book. Unfortunately I just never have the time anymore. Between work, our animals and the house I just never get to sit down and read.

I do admit time online has cut into that. But my online time is precious to me because I have made so many friends this way.

---

Paradise Lost, we're moving to Facebook!

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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


Interesting!

I still love reading a book from cover to cover, but I find less interesting books nowadays. In fact, I've shifted to reading non-fiction, which I don't read from cover to cover in one go. (In the long run, I do!)

I do get lost on the internet, and it sure helps me waste a lot of time. However, I used to do the same playing computer games before the internet. All in all, I'd say I gained from the web, simply because it helps to connect people in such a simple and easy way. I got all my stories published through that, even the printed ones. Books are now made through the internet. Funny, eh?

On the other hand, I no longer own a TV, and I rarely listen to the radio. I read the news online (to spare me the pictures, because of my empathy).

Yes, I'd say the internet has changed my life, and to a degree my thinking, probably. Weighing the good and bad, I wouldn't want to go back to the times before it, though.

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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


The good with the bad. The internet makes finding information so easy. But like traditional outlets you still may get a slanted view of the topic.

I know for me I still enjoy curling up with a good book. I find it harder to sit and read the computer than a good book. Just a few weeks ago I was complaining because I was informed I had to file my taxes electronicly;(YUCK) though it is faster I missed the paper the book to double check information.

I fear before my lifetime is over newspapers, magazines and books will all be things of the past.

What scares me more than the lose of books is the audible books we could become a society that forgets how to read all together.

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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


You bring up an interesting point playful. Radio, television and audio books have taken us AWAY from the printed word. BUT, the internet has reintroduced it! We sill must 'read' most of the material on the web (that's not to say there is plenty of non-text info out there). So perhaps we should thank the internet for saving the printed [sign in to see URL] in the same action perhaps it's killed the attention span?

I think all media after text has worked at reducing our attention span. The could be good or bad depending on the context.
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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


I still love a good, normal, everyday book. Not audio or on a [sign in to see URL] hard cover or paperback! So does my hubby. That's one thing I think the internet will never change about either of us.

I've had a computer since Dec. 1998, and I am addicted to it, BUT, it is my primary source of socializing since I am disabled.
I can only do so much before I have to sit down, so if I'm not online, I have some favorite games I like to [sign in to see URL], solitaire, spider solitaire, etc. It's also helpful when looking up things.

We do have a [sign in to see URL] are certain shows we truly enjoy, but it's rarely on unless those shows are on. If I want music, I have Sirius stations as well as CD/Audio channels on the DISH package we have, so I can listen to music if I want. If I need something I can't get off those channels, I can put one of my music CDs into the DVD player and listen to those.
One of the major things I see with the electronics that's in the [sign in to see URL] many people are getting caught up in the video games and aren't getting enough exercise, or are failing to do things that need to be done around the house. I was watching an episode of 'Clean House' that I had recorded and the man of this house was a true rocket scientist, his wife also worked, and her sister was living with them, going to school and work and there were 3 kids (all the couple's kids). All of the adults admitted to being [sign in to see URL] one of the things that the man admitted was he'd rather play his video games than to pick up or help out around the house, because it seemed like nothing they did helped the situation. I see this more and more [sign in to see URL] one reason our kids have [sign in to see URL] at some of the games out there! Not only do they teach violence, but if they are indoors all the time, NOT getting any exercise, while they munch on goodies and play, they are becoming over [sign in to see URL] they have NO idea how to use their imaginations.
Growing up, I had to create some of my own fun. I would make a play house by raking leaves in the form of outlines of [sign in to see URL] hanging old blankets from the clothes line. We played tag, or [sign in to see URL] were outside from the moment we were allowed out the door until the street lights came on in the summer....(being allowed out meant after all chores were [sign in to see URL] Mom's satisfaction).
In some ways, I think electronics have hampered lives, but in others, I think they have enhanced. Think about where some surgeries would be if we didn't have some of this technology available!

---
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~~@Saijen@~~
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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


ARG!!! This is the third or fourth time a post of mine has been lost! emoticon


In some ways, I think electronics have hampered lives, but in others, I think they have enhanced. Think about where some surgeries would be if we didn't have some of this technology available!



This is an excellent point. I read Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman (and reviewed it #post224752]here) - he made the point that technology just is. It's not good or evil. How we use it and the outcome of that use can be good or evil. So we just need to shape our use if we think it is being detrimental.

And another thing about the audio books that I was thinking of in a bout of insomnia last night! In the Postman book, he says that modern Americans are incapable of the kind of verbal attention span that used to be common place. Oral knowledge was the norm and people's brains readily accepted it. But now we have moved away from that. And example is presidential debates. They used to literally be hour long speeches and hour long rebuttals. Now they have, what, 5 minutes? Our ability to retain oral information has significantly decreased. But perhaps audio books are increasing that skill in the people that listen to them. So again, the audio technology is not bad in and of itself. It can be used to help oral retention (good)...or it can be used to replace all text (bad).

(by the [sign in to see URL] listened to the audio version of Postman's book! emoticon)
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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


I've never really been much of a 'reader'...when I was younger I preferred to be outside in Nature, to being inside with a book. But on occasion I would get a good book, usually something either "National Geographic" style or Science fiction. I had two [sign in to see URL] and dreaming... emoticon
But when I was younger I was an introvert. Preferred to be with myself and Nature. The internet has made me much more of an [sign in to see URL] now I read HOURS upon HOURS of posts and some friends stories online! emoticon

---

✴ Birthplace: Earth ✴ Race: Human ✴ Politics: Freedom ✴ Religion: Love♥

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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


Queeny, when I was young, I'd grab a book and go to the woods near our house, climb a tree and [sign in to see URL], got a two-fer. And sometimes saw more than a 10yr old should... emoticon

---
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Re: Electronic vs. old fashioned media


I used to carry a book with me everywhere. Now I find the time I would normally use for reading I use online.

I need to get back to reading. I miss it.

---

Paradise Lost, we're moving to Facebook!

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