We are a phobic society, afraid of the unknown, and now more than anything, being away from our devices. The term “nomophobia” has been recently introduced into our vernacular – “no-mobile-phone-phobia” – defining our fear of being without a connection. There is a lot of finger-posting going on regarding this trend, blaming the kids and their addiction to the digital world. Sure, all of my students stare into their phones at every given moment, desperate to scroll, some even convinced that they have been given a new power, that society has conceded to their ability to steer us to a brave new understanding.
However misguided they may be, they’re not the problem, only a symptom. The problem isn’t the users, but the providers, the people building these things, selling the latest models, pushing the digital world relentlessly forward. If you don’t buy, you don’t know, and then you die. Our nodigiphobia (“no-digital-device-phobia”) only continues to drive us toward the bleak horizon, latest device in hand, blogging and texting as we go.