In the recent years, a growing number of modern scientists have claimed that, besides the positive aspects of technological progress, its products can backfire on their creators. In the article “Technology: The New Addiction?”, Ralph E. Jones expresses an opinion that the use of modern devices has already become an addiction that will inevitably lead to the decrease of people’s cognitive abilities.
First, the author emphasizes that technology can be treated as an addiction from the perspective of the Mental Health field since it meets all its criteria: it requires much time so that a person starts ignoring all the other activities and develops psychological and sometimes even physical dependence on the subject. As well as alcohol or drug addiction, the use of various modern devices also leads to intellectual deterioration of a person. A set of experiments conducted by scholars from various universities has demonstrated that the use of a smartphone negatively influences cognitive abilities of people, namely memory, attention, and fluid intelligence. According to Jones, the main danger of this addiction lies in the fact that people lack face-to-face interaction that is a must for a person to remain mentally healthy. It has an especially negative impact on children since their mind is extremely flexible and sensible and may be traumatized by the lack of human communication.
However, the author does not take into consideration the fact that, suppressing people’s memory and attention, modern devices simultaneously develop their rates of reaction and information processing. Moreover, for many people with special needs or those having some psychological complexes, modern devices are the only means of keeping in touch with the world and communicating with people. For example, deaf-mute people or those who stammer often feel uncomfortable during real-life conversations and try to avoid them that harms their mental health much more that the use of a smartphone.
Summing up, from the point of view of Ralph E. Jones, modern technology is an important factor that injures the mental health of most modern people. It does not only deteriorate their cognitive abilities but also deprives them of normal face-to-face communication that can have dramatic consequences for their psyche. Nevertheless, the author’s assumptions are based only on his subjective experience and does not take into consideration the interests of other people who have different needs and interests.
- Jones, Ralph E. “Technology: The New Addiction?” Valley Star, 23 July 2017, www.valleymorningstar.com/life/health_wellness/technology-the-new-addiction/article_9f394d20-6e67-11e7-92ad-831ae4c62b40.html.