Most of the time, tech companies such as Apple Inc., Amazon, Google, and Facebook, are competing against one another. However, their former employees thought of working together to be able to help the growing threat of tech addiction, especially to kids and teens.
Ever since social media has overtaken the world, more and more people are getting hooked. It doesn’t even matter how old you are and where you are from, social media can be accessed basically anywhere. Social media wouldn’t be present without the tech devices it lives off to, such as computers and smartphones.
Experts believe that there is absolutely nothing wrong with using techs, but everything that is out of moderation can be considered an addiction. Which is why a former Apple Inc., Google, and Facebook employees decided to work together to work on a campaign that would help fight tech addiction, continue reading to find out more.
‘The Truth About Tech’ Campaign
Who would’ve thought that former Apple Inc., Facebook and Google employees would decide to work together in order to fight tech addiction? According to a report released on New York Times, one of their very first and main goals is said to be publicizing and spreading awareness to more than 55,000 public schools, this is made possible by Common Sense Media who gave them a $7 million fund for the campaign.
This campaign is very controversial because they are launching it despite the accusations of Silicon Valley that tech companies such as the Apple, Facebook, and Google are the ones to blame when it comes to designing addictive platforms that manipulates and urges young brains to get into it so much.
This campaign is led by a former Facebook employee, Justin Rosenstein, who is the man behind the ‘Like’ button, together with Roger McNamee, who is a former investor on Facebook. With them comes a former communications executive Lynn Foxx from Apple Inc. and Tristan Harris, who used to be Google’s design ethicist. They have decided to create some sort of living document wherein it would help experts such as engineers to be able to study the technology that they have created and they called it as Ledger of Harms.
Aside from the campaign, they are also aiming to lure public officials so they could share some funds in order to continue spreading awareness and doing research when it comes to tech addiction.
The group has admitted that they have indeed seen the tricks when it comes to making people get more into the contents and one of them is having autoplay videos, that would lead to endless scrolling as well as some gamification encouragement.
For instance, when someone watches a video, they could look into other videos as well and it would lead them to want to watch another video and it would end up them having to watch for like an hour or two. Harris basically said that they know exactly how everything works since they were basically part of it once, and they know what needs to be done.
According to experts, if not guided properly, young minds might be at risk to addiction and it might lead to mental health problems such as anxiety, depression and more.
According to the author of iGen, psychologist Jean Twenge said that one of the main reasons why kids and young adults may not have fun doing other things besides focus on their techs is that they are spending way too much time with it and that they no longer find other things enjoyable such as spending time with family and friends, playing some sports and more.
A developmental-behavioral pediatrician from the American Academy of Pediatrics, Jenny Radesky even said that ‘addiction’ is not supposed to be a word that is used on any child behavior, the correct term would be ‘functional impairment’.
When a child uses any tech devices far too long that they always want to spend so much time using it, then it is definitely affecting a child’s behavior. Children do not necessarily realize that spending too much time doing something that it is already affecting their everyday lives is something that is bad, parents, on the other hand, can’t technically watch their children 24/7 especially if they’re in school.
Which is why the ‘Truth About Tech’ campaign is pushing to change the design on techs wherein it could no longer manipulate young minds and make them feel like they have to constantly be in their tech devices most of the time.