It’s true: Society is becoming more and more reliant — and sometimes addicted — to technology. For many, using a smartphone for browsing the web or checking social media updates is the first thing done in the morning and the last thing done at night. We are constantly connected to both work and social media.
Pew Research says that 46 percent of smartphone owners say their smartphone is something “they couldn’t live without.” An earlier Pew report states that 7 percent of U.S. adults who own a smartphone are completely dependent on it. I find this figure rather low just by looking around myself right now.
Today’s technology dependency is astounding. Most every income group, demographic and ethnicity has become accustomed to an “instant information” way of life. Sometimes, this is for the better. Many times, it’s not.
At the recent RIMS Conference in New Orleans, I was present during the closing general session featuring keynote speaker Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post. She proved to be insightful and quite frank — much more so than I expected.
It came as a bit shocking to learn that in 2007 Huffington collapsed from exhaustion, breaking her cheekbone and creating a deep gash above her eye. Confused as to what was going on, she quizzed her doctors, who ran numerous tests and eventually diagnosed her with exhaustion.
At the time, Huffington was working 18-hour days building The Huffington Post. She was constantly connected, always on call and never getting enough sleep. Her live recollection of this time was frightening, to say the least.