January 1, 2000. Advisory and Health Warning for the use of Electronic Mail from the Department of Communications, Stress Management, and Sanity .
“Attention, over the next several decades your primary method of communication will be electronic mail, aka as ‘email’. There are many positive features and benefits to using this form of communication. For example, you’ll be able to send and receive messages from people, instantaneously, anywhere and anytime! You won’t have to bother picking up the phone, interupting people, or them interupting you unessessarily. Not only that you’ll be able to send documents,large and small, pictures, even video!
Health Warning! You’ll likely become so dependant on using this new form of communication that you’ll likely become addicted to it! No less addicticted than a drug addict is to cocaine or gambler to the ‘action’. In this case the ‘action’ will be the need to check your email, even when there’s no reason, just to see if any new communication has arrived to your inbox. You may wonder, for example, if somone has sent you a funny video, perhaps with cats chasing birds through a sprinkler while the infant laughs and the dog stares in awe. You’ll feel an unatural urge to forward this video to everyone you know, they in turn will share the video with everyone they know, potentially interupting an otheriwse productive day at work or relaxing day at home.
People will also tend use (and abuse) this new technology to avoid having actual conversation, share real feelings or have meaningful dialogue. Unhappy couples, for example, will ‘break up’, electronically! Millions of others will thoughtlessly use email to rant or gossip or engage in inane mindless chatter.
Countless numbers of people, young and old, will be transfixed with this new technology! Wherever and whenever, people will feel a compulsion to react and respond to eamil and text, as their brains become overstimulated and saturated with neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine. They will camp out all night at shopping malls and wait in long lines in the bitter cold, simply to get the latest fix. In the futre their will be a need for ’12 step like programs to healp people break the addiction to technology.
Volume. Given the sheer volume of electronic mail, you’ll need to figure out a way to manage the hundreds or thousands of emails and texts you’ll receive on a regular basis. You’ll need to sort what’s important, work related from junk mail and figure out how to keep up with endless requests for your time and attention.
And this is just the beginning! In the near future people will become enamered with ‘Social Media’, electronic group forums with names like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. This is yet another new techynology that will tend dominate peoples lives.
Ironically, the technology designed to make our lives so much easier and simpler may have just the opposite effect. While the long term psyco-social affect of all of this technology is not yet known, millions of people may suffer from anyone of a number of the following side affects: stress, anxiety, depression, experience trouble falling alseep and/or sleeping soundly through the night, experience trouble focusing and/or paying attention for any length of time, poor diet and lack of exercise.
Onemoore E.Gadget, Federal Dept. of Too Much Technology