Living in the Digital Age has opened the doors to constant access to streamed information. Google provides answers and opinions to virtually any question and online magazines and blogs provide entertainment, inspiring self-help, and horoscopes. There has never been another time where humans were exposed to such attainable information. There is also this idea that the internet has incredibly distracting venues and is typically viewed negatively. Pop-up ads at every site, hyperlinks of further exploration, and Facebook is just a tab click away. “The Internet is an interruption system. It seizes our attention only to scramble it,” Nicolas Carr mentions in his book The Web Shatters Focus. “There’s the problem of hypertext and the many different kinds of media coming at us simultaneously.”
Attempting to do work while on a computer can provide easy access to distraction. But is distraction really something that only comes with the internet? Arguably, I think that humans have always been distracted in some form or the other. in “In Praise of Distraction,” Christina Lupton mentions Florence Nightingale’s argumentation of women reading books in 1852 as “no door is ever closed in favour of their seclusion; no protection ever erected to favour their concretion.” There was always outlying factors to enhance distraction like a crying baby or work to do.
Even today, attempting to rid possible distractions people may venture to the library. Other people moving around, talking, or even a slam of a book may stop a train of thought. Singing birds and loud cars driving by typically force myself to look out the window, away from what I am working on. Though, I am not denouncing the Internet for not being distracting; it totally is. I am just thinking that humans have always been around distraction and that it is not a relatively new thing.
Carr, Nicholas. “The Web Shatters Focus, Rewires Brains.” WIRED Magazine. 24 May 2010. Web.
Lupton, Christina. “In Praise of Distraction.” Avidly. Los Angeles Review of Books, 09 Dec. 2015. Web.
Image by Yoshi Sodeoka