Day Without Facebook: Are Social Networks Dangerous for Health?



“Technology is hacking the minds of people,” says Tristan Harris, the former “product philosopher” of Google. “God only knows what Facebook is doing to our children’s brains,” says Sean Parker, the former president of Mark Zuckerberg’s firm. “My children do not have the right to use this shit [still talking about the same social network],” says Chamath Palihapitiya, the former vice president of growth in user numbers. It gives a vague idea of all the good that these “repentis” of Silicon Valley think of digital interfaces, and Facebook in particular.

As any self-respecting sheep (do not play the innocent), we will enjoy the day without Facebook this Wednesday to say goodbye to our virtual friends for 24 hours. According to an Opinion Way Moijeune * study, 54% of young people have already thought about closing their account, the opportunity to put this threat into effect. And if you feel heart palpitations to exchange a like for a head to head in the street corner, ask yourself the right questions … While waiting for you to admit into rehab, let’s analyze real risks that tech represents for your physical health and that of your mind.

Psychomotor retardation, sleep disorders

Babies and young children are the first victims of the digital monster. We know, thanks to the study of Linda Pagani, a professor at the School of Psychoeducation at the University of Montreal, that over-consumption of television for toddlers (before age 3) is not recommended (the word is weak) and, alert spoiler, all the other screens have pretty much the same negative effects for their brain. “The very young have a neuronal and psychic development essential in their relation to the three-dimensional space, they will capture the images, they will understand the emotions, but they will not have the understanding of the action that is there. pass, “says Claude Allard, child and adolescent psychiatrist, author of the Desarrois of the digital child (Hermann).

Teen in front of the TV = future idiot?

The mere act of seeing an adult looking at his phone disturbs the health of the child. “He feels abandoned,” points Serge Tisseron. The adult is physically present, but absent psychically, but care is the foundation of human relationships. “The screens impoverish intrafamily communication, everyone is in front of his screen and no one is talking to each other,” observes Claude Allard. And, it creates problems in the emotional development of the child. The screen in the field of vision of a toddler brings only problems, to summarize. Either he’s been fed on technology and he’s gone bad in life, or he feels abandoned by a distracted parent. In any case, it’s the cat.

And when a young adult scrubs for hours his news feed on Facebook, what is the risk? “Adolescence is the art of wasting time,” says Serge Tisseron. At this age, we have one idea in our mind: do not think. It goes through various means, television, video games, Facebook, “smiles the screens specialist. Are social networks more toxic than pinball? So far, no scientific study has shown that heavy consumers of video games or the Internet as teenagers become idiots.

The survey Media in Life of Mediametrie Company focused on the Millennials even shows that digital natives who have grown up with mobile have a richer social life. “There is no evidence that adults, they make a pathological use of social networks,” says Serge Tisseron who warns against the overused use of the term “addiction.”

Accros screens, a band of junkies?

With screens, there is no risk of relapse or withdrawal period. “If you do not have 4G on vacation, you will be irritated in ten minutes, but you will recover,” insists the psychiatrist. By using the terms “junkies”, “dealers”, “shoot”, tech repentants make a shortcut that many professionals refuse to do. And, if social networks give a “dose of dopamine” through a system of well thought out rewards (likes, comments), this is the case of our entire economy. American series and video games use exactly the same trick to keep people in suspense.

“If we denounce the principle of dopamine, we must denounce the system on which the economy is based” tempers Serge Tisseron who is less concerned about the relationship of adolescents with screens than by looting the personal data of technology players. Let’s hope that the ethical models of Mastodon and the young Vero end up imposing a more respectful alternative to privacy and personal data, but we are not really there.


About Dawn Richard

In addition to writing for NextColumn, Dawn Richard contributes to other publications including Sensiblereason and Natural News. He studied Computer Science and Journalism at Boston University, and also worked in BBC as well as in the public sectors.

View all posts by Dawn Richard →

Leave a Reply