Welcome to the age of behavioral addiction – an age in which half the American population is addicted to at least one behavior. We obsess over our emails, Instagram likes and Facebook feeds; we binge on TV episodes and YouTube videos; we work longer hours each year; and we spend an average of three hours each day using our smart phones.
Smartphones are becoming the drug of choice for teens.
Silicon Valley is engineering phones, apps, social media to get users hooked and to shape thoughts, feelings and actions. The smartphone is a slot machine.
Companies are working hard to check in constantly and to make money. Brain hacking works by boosting fear, anxiety and loneliness. These are the by-products in this game to claim your attention at all costs.
Addiction is no accident. Brain hacking is the dopamine lab according to Tristan Harris, former Product Philosopher at Google until he quit in 2016. Harris studied how technology affects billions of people’s attention, wellbeing and behavior.
In January 2010 at an Apple event, Steve Jobs admitted that he refused to let his kids use the iPad. New York Times journalist Nick Bilton discovered that other tech giants imposed similar restrictions.