News today which upsets the stereotype of teenagers who spend a lot of time online or otherwise fooling with computers: rather than being lonely dorks with poor social skills who seldom leave their bedrooms, such kids are in fact more likely to get squiffy, have sex and even to take drugs than their less tech-savvy peers. The …
Missing the point
Just using a computer to browse social networks isn't the same as writing the next great social application or hacking NASA looking for extraterrestrials. I'll bet that there are still a large number of "lonely dorks" out there. Too much emphasis is given today to the supposed ability to use a computer mistaking that for understanding them and being able to USE them.
The ability to click a link does not a dork make, lonely or otherwise.
To the credit of the study authors, the conflation between heavy computer use among teenagers and lonely dorks who actually *know* shit about computers is entirely the fault of Mr. Page, whom it would be perhaps unfair to blame too heavily for failing to notice that computer technology has advanced beyond the point where it had nothing to offer any teenager save those who, like me in my increasingly distant youth, are already inclined toward sad-bastardy to begin with.
On the other hand, I'm really starting to wonder when it becomes permissible to stop being over the moon with the accomplishments of modern social engineering technology ("social cognitive theory" being an excellent example of same), and start instead worrying over what happens when such tools get into the wrong hands -- not to mention that, having in any case had our minds fucked around with from birth in various ways by various people with myriad and generally incompatible agendas, we're not likely to correctly identify the wrong hands even if we get a chance to see them.
This is not a particularly controversial assertion. Who loves a marketer? Hell, if you set one on fire, who'd bother carrying the weight of a full bladder all the way across the road to put it out? And, leaving aside the irrelevancy of the difference in motives, what is marketing but social engineering on a retail basis instead of wholesale?
oooooh and online survey
since I spend all my time in the basement surfing the internet, I will enjoy this. Let's see:
Question 1, do you have sex?
Oh crap, better make something up quick, "10 times a night". Yeah that ought to stick.
Question 2, do you wear a seat belt?
Well I don't own a car, so no.
Question 3, do you partake in the consumption of alcohol?
I am partaking in it now.
Question 4, how many friends do you have?
I will just put 7, as that is the number of n00bs I have pwned today.
It's not really sex ...
> lonely dorks with poor social skills ... are in fact more likely to get squiffy, have sex
... if there's no-one else present
While I can appreciate that "seeing people engaged in a behaviour is a way of learning that behaviour," to some extent has merit, there's a huge difference between watching (say) an olympic swimmer and then claiming you can swim - if not exactly win a gold medal. It also takes practice, which just about brings us back to lonely teens having sex in their bedrooms.
Monkey see, monkey do!
And my son would probably chip in now and tell me this is "random". Like, whatever.
Teens who spend time online not dorks after all..
That's what I was trying to tell them while they were flushing my head down the toilet.
"smoking, drunkenness, non-use of seatbelts, cannabis and illicit drug use, and unprotected sex"
To paraphrase HST, I wouldn't recommend it for everyone, but they've always worked for me...