Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Crappy story in today's "Age"

I won't dignify it with a link, but there was a real shoddy-journalism article on page one of the online edition today, covering Internet addiction by teenagers.

While I don't doubt that Internet is a real and unfortunate problem for some people, the article was centered more around scare-mongering.

Statistics of 14 hours a week of Internet usage were cited as example cases. Most families easily watch this much television in a week. Why single out people who are using the Internet? At least email is a form of social interaction, and at least gaming is an interactive process.

Rather that worrying about "addiction" with a stick-only attitude, I think that people should simply concentrate on ensuring that any addictive activity is balanced by other inputs also.

Parents should not worry about their children's Internet addictions during the ad-breaks of their favourite T.V. programs. Pot, meet kettle.



Anonymous Becky said...

Oh I read that! (I'm in Melbourne for a bit, so The Age is now my newspaper) I didn't read it with such a critical eye though, so I'm finding your reaction comforting.

Seriously, if that's all the criteria for internet addiction, I should be checking myself in somewhere. And I'm a normal person. I don't understand what HTML means. EVERYONE checks their emails before they do anything else, don't they?

And aren't teenagers supposed to be sullen and withdrawn? I think you've got way more of a problem if your teenager seems to actually enjoy hanging out with the rest of the family.

11/23/2005 05:00:00 PM  
Blogger MelbournePhilosopher said...

If you're in Melbourne, how about a coffee sometime? (this goes for any other Melbourne readers who might be interested). My personal email is


11/24/2005 10:49:00 AM  
Blogger thesocialworker said...

I read it, then checked the signs of addiciton against how many hours a day my mother spends opening envelopes for crappy pay. Turns out she's addicted it.

11/27/2005 07:16:00 PM  
Blogger MelbournePhilosopher said...

:) Good comedy...

Although, in an odd kind of way, addiction is a bit like not being able to see the benefits of other possibilities.

Well, obviously a physical addiction is quite different, but mental addictions are similar. Or I feel so, anyway.


11/27/2005 07:39:00 PM  

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