Browse Worthy: Help for Living in this Digital Age

From the “Twitter Wars” between presidential candidates down to trying to talk with a family member looking at a screen, we all need help in processing the content, protecting our families, and being productive in this digital age. Here are a few links and resources to that end.

Can I Ask a Dumb Question?

Tim Challies offers wise counsel about not joining the latest Twitter mob when people are merely being dumb rather than malicious on social media. “Social media shaming is a new force for justice, a means of shaming an offender into silence or repentance…The problem is that the response we bring against the worst malevolence can also be the response we bring against those who say or do things that are merely dumb. We can mete out the same punishment as a response to two very different offenses.”

WTAE Fires Wendy Bell

As if to make Tim’s point above, an award-winning local journalist here in Pittsburgh created a firestorm over comments she made about African Americans following the horrific shootings that left six people dead. Though certainly dumb and insensitive at points, Bell did seem to be awkwardly trying to address a real problem and did apologize for her comments. However, it was not enough to keep her from losing her job. A lesson for us all is contained here.

American Girls and Their Social Media Lives

A book by this title written by Nancy Jo Sales shows we need to continue to exercise diligence in raising our children in this technological age. In case you think it is only boys with pornography that are in danger, read this review and think again.  “Today teenage girls live online, a recent study revealing that “92 percent were going online from a mobile device daily” (10). But this online world isn’t the screen of innocent fun so many parents believe it to be. It’s a hypersexualized world where validation, acceptance, and worth are inexorably connected to sexual appeal and appetite.”

How to Focus Deeply in a Distracted World

A helpful podcast interview with Cal Newport, author of the book  Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World. One warning he gives is against the interference technology brings to accomplishing tasks that require concentrated thought. “Newport explained ‘context switching’ or that feeling you get when your brain reflexively moves to constantly check Twitter or your inbox. ‘A workflow that’s built around constant quick checks is actually reducing the cognitive capacity of your brain,’ he said.”

iPod, YouTube, Wii Play

What an awesome title for a book! How I have missed it until now I am not sure, but I recently enjoyed reading this review by T. David Gordon and am adding this book to my reading list.

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