Look ma! There’s a TV in my computer!

Social media is the new TV

Social media is the new TV. And it’s more lethal than old TV.

Because unlike old TV, :

  • it can be consumed in much smaller chunks
  • using the same physical thing that is your main tool of work
  • and has a never-ending supply of fresh never-before-seen content
  • which provides intermittent, variable reinforcement
  • and easy ego-boosting social recognition

A lot of techies, including me, like to brag about the fact that they don’t own a TV, because it’s a drain on their productivity and social life.

Ironically, we’ve replaced it with email, Twitter, Facebook, Hacker News, Reddit, Instagram, etc. which are much worse for our productivity.

Imagine if Picasso had a Twitter feed on his canvas. I doubt he’d have got much painting done.


Originally published at hrishimittal.com.