There is still a line to buy the iPhone 5s, and many are wondering why. Why would people have to wait in line after the phone has been out on the market for over two months? The retail stores say it’s because the item keeps selling out and going on backorder, but the real reason is a lot deeper than that. The iPhone 5s is a product that creates huge lines month after month because of Americans’ deeply rooted technology addiction combined with the American sense of entitlement.
When severe technology addiction meets American entitlement, people find the time to stand in long lines for the latest unneccesary gadget, complaining all the while. The fits that are thrown by people denied of the latest pocket computer are simliar to temper tantrums undertaken by a toddler denied his cookies. Meanwhile, all around the world, children are dying of starvation; or worse yet-forced to live in horrible conditions with no medicine and no clean water. Those children would be happy with an ounce of bread let alone an iPhone 5s.
Americans, however, in our overly-coddled cocoons, are not satisfied with being able to call people; no, we want to be able to carry computers in our pockets, and they must be the latest, greatest and most expensive miniature computers available or we are vastly unhappy.When we can’t get our own way immediately and face a wait for the latest gadget, the addiction process kicks in and makes us feel uncomfortable and disgruntled. Studies show that technology and gadget addiction is as powerful as addiction to illegal street drugs like cocaine; and that its effects on the brain are more severe than nicotine or alcohol.
Recently, a study that involved college students forced them to give up all of their technology for just 24 measly hours. The results were disturbing and unfortunate: four out of five students in the study suffered extreme physical and mental withdrawal symptoms that were as intense as people forced to give up drugs and/or nicotine. One student described the withdrawal as the same as what someone addicted to crack cocaine feels when they go through detoxification.
The withdrawal symptoms during the study included panic attacks, extreme jitters, depression, feeling of intense isolation, confusion, feelings of despondency, heart palpitations and more. The study respondents said they felt completely lost and very depressed in addition to the physical symptoms they experienced.
Across Asia, numerous in-patient treatment facilities have been set up to assist people in overcoming their technology addiction. Here in the United States, there is at least one in-treatment facility and multiple outpatient facilities to help people struggling with this addiction.
Silicon Valley feeds into this addictive process by pushing their products onto an unsuspecting public. They offer no disclosures about how addictive these gadgets are, nor take any steps to implement guidelines for people about responsible usage. Public perception does not acknowledge technology addiction as real, even as more and more people every day are killed in texting and driving accidents. What’s more, irresponsible commercials such as the one by Apple which show a woman ignoring a work meeting in favor of staring at her iPad, reinforce the idea that being unable to tear oneself away from his or her gadget is an acceptable behavior in our society.
Other commercials such as the laughable yet offensive commercial for Ashford University entitled technology changes everything, reinforce the incorrect and misguided idea that no human contact is required for optimal learning. During the Ashford University commercial, students call a real classroom environment “boring,” and state that no one needs a an actual classroom to learn. The ideas espoused in this commercial have been disproven through the dreadful results that have been the outcome of most purely online learning environments; studies show that online learning alone does not produce the same results as either a classroom based learning environment or a hybrid of online learning and classroom instruction.
Further, misleading headlines such as an article entitled Online Learning Outcomes Similar to Classroom Results trick people into thinking that students who took only online instruction did as well as students who had at least some real classroom interaction, and it is simply not true. In fact, in that study, there were no students that used a strictly online learning environment. Either a hybrid (human instruction plus online learning) or strict human instruction was used. Here, it is clear to see that the media reinforces the agenda of their advertisers by purposely tricking people into thinking that real classroom instruction is not necessary for optimal learning when clearly, superior learning always involves actual human instruction.
Three studies in this meta-analysis showed an advantage to face-to-face instruction while the rest showed the most benefit from a hybrid model. The media, however, must kowtow to advertisers, thus they produce headlines suggesting that pure online learning is superior. But what does this have to do with the iPhone 5s and long lines to buy one after two months of the product being on the market?
This all relates to the iPhone 5s because it shows how deeply fooled society is by the tricks and deceit of those in Silicon Valley. When commercials show people staring at their gadgets and ignoring their bosses, and the media announces misleading headlines about learning through gadgets being superior to classroom learning, the outcome is an addicted society with the wool pulled over our collective eyes about the true nature of gadgets and technology.
The is still a line to buy the iPhone 5s because Americans are addicted to gadgets and perpetually tricked by the media into thinking their addiction is not only o.k. , but beneficial. This is despite a growing body of evidence that texting harms relationships, social media causes depression, and a host of other problems that are linked to gadget overuse. If you still don’t believe in technology addiction, try to wrestle an iPad from a toddler’s hands and observe the reaction. Enough said.
An editorial by: Rebecca Savastio