According to recent research, office workers are becoming hooked on email, constantly checking their inboxes for a morsel of digital social interaction. In The Shallows: What The Internet Is Doing To Our Brains, Nicholas Carr argues that email exploits a human instinct to forage for new information, sporadically providing addictive pleasure in our search for “pellets of social nourishment.”
In fact, researchers have found that the brain releases the pleasure-causing chemical dopamine each time we discover a new bit of information. Meanwhile, British office workers, according to one poll, scan their inboxes on average about once every two minutes.
”What makes digital messages all the more compelling,” says Carr, “is their uncertainty. There’s always the possibility that something important is waiting for us in our inbox [and this] overwhelms our knowledge that most online missives are trivial.”
And so continues the trivialisation of thought, at least as far as pessimists are concerned.
Via The Drum
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