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Half Of Teens Think They're Addicted To Their Smartphones ( 103

An anonymous reader writes: A new poll confirms just how much teens depend on their phones. Fifty percent of teens feel they are addicted to their mobile devices, according to the poll, which was conducted for Common Sense Media, a nonprofit focused on helping children, parents, teachers and policymakers negotiate media and technology. A larger number of parents, 59%, said their teens were addicted. The poll involved 1,240 interviews with parents and their children, ages 12 to 18. "Technological addiction can happen to anyone," said digital detox expert Holland Haiis. "If your teens would prefer gaming indoors, alone, as opposed to going out to the movies, meeting friends for burgers or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie, you may have a problem."
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Half Of Teens Think They're Addicted To Their Smartphones

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  • or the right half?

  • Gaming indoors? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by 110010001000 ( 697113 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @12:03PM (#52045275) Homepage Journal
    What does gaming indoors have to do with smartphones? Oh I get it, a "digital detox expert" is trying to make a buck doing nothing with their life.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      If you'd prefer to be alone than with other people you are unhealthy and wrong!

      Please pay no attention to the fact that an estimated 50-75% of people are introverts... those people are just sick in the head and we can fix them by paying some one else to do it... a therapist, psychologist or digital detox expert.

      • If you'd prefer to be alone than with other people

        Yeah, but I kind of think that's because of other people, not because of me :)

  • And the other half are in denial.
  • I thought being online all the time was weird. I was glued to my monitor. Now everyone is doing it with cell phones and saying they are addicted. I kinda miss when you had to be a nerd to get online. It wasn't a social issue back then.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    How am I supposed to keep my kids from getting addicted to smart phones when my wife snaps at me every time I suggest that maybe she could put her phone down during dinner.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Get a divorce.

    • Instead of picking on her for not being engaged, try being more interesting than her phone. Ask her interesting things about topics she likes to talk about.

      Would bet that if you put a couple candles out, dimmed the lights and sat next to her she wouldn't even bring her phone out.
      • by zlives ( 2009072 )

        if all else fails you could just socially engage other adults, that might get her attention.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    "People Don't Understand What The Word "Addicted" Means"

  • If your teens would prefer gaming indoors, alone (Well online with hundreds of people who they are interacting with)
    as opposed to going out to the movies (Nothing more social going into a big dark room to sit down to watch a movie, and told be quite)
    meeting friends for burgers (Nothing wholesome like connecting friendship with the injection of fatty foods. )
    or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie. (camaraderie?!? For teens they are so self absorbed that they never even listen to their friends

  • Uh huh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EmeraldBot ( 3513925 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @12:15PM (#52045379)

    "If your teens would prefer writing poetry, alone, as opposed to going out to the theater, meeting friends for rolls or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie, you may have a problem." - ancient Rome ~ 0AD

    If you're addicted, by all means seek treatment, but honestly, most of this is simply another round of how decadent kids are, and this has been going for many thousands of years, probably since the first ever sucessful hunt. Furthermore, most of this is pales to a real addiction - if your symptoms are that you don't like being around others, how about we talk about being addicted to books? Being addicted to movies? Being addicted to schoolwork? Hell, being addicted to being an introvert? The symptoms are all the same. Undoubtly there are people who truly suffer from this, I'm not saying there aren't, but I suspect much of this to be overblown out of proportions.

    • Re:Uh huh... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Jason Levine ( 196982 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @12:36PM (#52045535) Homepage

      When I was growing up, I preferred reading a book to interacting with people. I even had a "dealer" (my local library) who supplied me with a seemingly endless supply of free books to fuel my addiction. I rarely went out with friends to the movies and never went to hang out at a burger shop or the mall. (I half expected the author to cite declining "sock hop" participation." I turned out just fine (though nowadays I don't have the time to feed my book addiction as much as I'd like).

      • by KGIII ( 973947 )

        It's possible to zealously engage in an activity to the point where it is harmful - and I don't think that I know of any activity where that can't be true.

        As an aside, your librarian might have even given you those first hits for free and now that you're an adult you can look back and see all that you've spent on the industry. It *is* like drug pushers!

        I shouldn't do this to you but I'm going to... See, I discovered something not too long ago. I hate to admit it but it's true and if you don't have time to f

        • I know all about audio books. My wife likes using them so she can crochet and "read" at the same time. I'm more into electronic books since I can have a stack of "books" with me at all times.

          Of course, I've also moved into writing my own book so hopefully one day I'm fueling someone else's book addiction.

          • by KGIII ( 973947 )

            Put me on your notification list for when you're done, if you don't mind. And I'm expecting you're aware of them - I'm suspecting that you're not using them. :D They actually aren't as bad as I'd expected. They can be hell to pay attention to while driving in traffic. I could probably text a novel while driving and have fewer distractions than I have when listening and driving. I've reached the point where I tend to wait until I'm on the highway or away from traffic before listening. The missus doesn't much

            • We did listen to the audio book copy of The Princess, The Scoundrel, And The Farm Boy (a retelling of Star Wars Episode 4 with sections from Leia's, Han's, and Luke's perspective) on a recent road trip. It was very nice. I still prefer the act of sitting down, letting the book be my entire focus, and actually reading it myself, though. I wouldn't look down on someone who's into audio books (we also used them to help one of my son's get into reading - he'd read the book along with the audio book), but the

              • by KGIII ( 973947 )

                I, too, much prefer to sit (technically lay) down and read but time sure is sometimes lacking and I spend a lot of time in an automobile. I've found it comes in handy and allows me to keep my desire reasonably well quenched. :D

  • Out of touch (Score:4, Interesting)

    by snadrus ( 930168 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @12:17PM (#52045403) Homepage Journal

    Gaming indoors is the modern teen camaraderie:
      - Invites communication & collaborative strategy
      - Experiencing win/lose attitudes

    Movies are the epitome of anti-social:
      - sit silently in the dark, opposing all who talk, to be indoctrinated.

    Driving age is over 18 in many areas, or over 19 with passengers, so how are the "teens" supposed to get to this burger place?

    • Video games make you have to make decisions in a short amount of time. This makes you better to think on your feet. There's a lot to be said for the good video games provide compared to just being a passive watcher of tv. And the communication factor of a phone(heh) provides for more socialization with the people you know.
  • Half of teens think being "triggered" is feeling mildly uncomfortable after reading something they don't like and "depression" is not enjoying getting up early in the morning to go to school. Some definitions and a little bit of perspective might be in order.

    Having a mental illness is the new black, don'tcha know. Who needs health professionals when you can self diagnose based on what you read on Tumblr?

  • "If your teens would prefer gaming indoors, alone, as opposed to going out to the movies, meeting friends for burgers or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie, you may have a problem."

    I'm sorry but this is the same bullsh** parents used to spout when I was a child-

    Don't waste your time playing video games!
    Go outside and get some sun!
    Why don't you go play football or something?
    you'll never if you just sit there on that computer all day.

    Our parents meant well. But they didn't understand that gam

  • Half Of Teens Think They're Addicted To Their Smartphones - the other half are in denial.

  • "If your teens would prefer gaming indoors, alone, as opposed to going out to the movies, meeting friends for burgers or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie, you may have a problem."

    Perhaps I hate paying outrageous amounts of money to sit in a dirty theater with stale, overpriced popcorn while some teenagers in upper back row provide braindead commentary and inside jokes with their other friends while theater management simply does nothing. Why are online relationships so much less "socia
  • they are addicted. If we only had a Reagan to declare The War On Phones.
  • by Pfhorrest ( 545131 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @12:49PM (#52045655) Homepage Journal

    If you would prefer doing things alone by yourself instead of with other people, the vast majority of whom are shitty and not worthy of your time, there's something wrong with you! /sarcasm

  • by gurps_npc ( 621217 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @12:57PM (#52045749) Homepage

    After all, they probably just read on their cellphones that they were addicted, so they parroted it back ;D

    But to be honest, real addicts DENY that they are addicts. One of the core principles of the 12 steps is to admit your addiction. Same thing for most of the other non-12 step programs.

    Real addicts don't admit they have a problem.

    • Just because someone has admitted that they're addicted to something, doesn't mean they aren't addicted any more. Aren't there 11 other steps in the 12 step program? Try asking a few people who smoke cigarrettes or drink coffee whether they're addicted or not.
    • Yeah ... but the next 2 steps in the 12 are believe in god, and trust him kick your habit for you.

      So, you know, grain of salt and all that.

  • As a parent of kids who are just becoming teens, I can say it is real tough to keep them off of those things. We haven't get bought smartphones for our kids for partly this reason. Judging by how hard it is to keep them away from their tablets at home, and maintain a healthy balance to their lives, teachers will have no chance at it. Once they get phones I can see there will be no going back; they will spend every waking moment on them and we won't be there so there will be nothing we can do. I'm kind o
  • ...half of teens don't know what "addicted" means.

    • If you look at the comments and hype in the gaming sections of the App stores, you'll discover that 'addicting' has been adopted as a praiseworthy thing.

      "The Most Addicting Game in the App Store" is often part of the hype-description for a game.

      And in the User comments, people say things like 'This game is sooo addicting.'

      The word has changed, and something being 'addicting' isn't seen as so bad.

  • "Digital detox expert" cracked me up. I'm a Psychologist by education, and as far as I know, "digital detox expert" is not legit. I strongly doubt it is addiction in the same way we mean when we say, "Bob is addicted to opiates". Do teens go through physical withdrawal symptoms when smart phone use ceases? I mean, aside from being angsty and pissy (normal teen behavior).

    • Unlikely but one distinct difference between a psychologist and psychiatrist is that in psychiatry they emphasize that there is an underlying physical interaction to every thought and feeling and this is used to ignore the distinction between a physical addiction (such as opiates which cause a chemical interaction which ultimately converts into chemicals to which you form a dependence) and psychological addiction in which you find activities fulfilling and your brain triggers the release of "rewards."

  • "If your teens would prefer gaming indoors, alone, as opposed to going out to the movies, meeting friends for burgers or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie, you may have a problem."

    I'm not sure that there is much of a difference between going out to eat burgers with friends, or playing a game online with friends. They're both social events...

  • When I was a teen, I thought I was addicted to Green Day.

    They'll be fine.
  • by shaitand ( 626655 ) on Wednesday May 04, 2016 @03:49PM (#52047849) Journal
    Teens build camaraderie through online interaction and not going out to movies these days.

    To an out of touch parent it may appear your child is gaming alone. In reality they likely have a chat and/or voice connection to their friends and are playing a game together through the net. This is no less social or camaraderie than sitting in a room playing a board or video game together but parents would see one as social interaction and the other as isolation.
  • "Addicted to technology" and "If your teens would prefer gaming indoors, alone, as opposed to going out to the movies, meeting friends for burgers or any of the other ways that teens build camaraderie, you may have a problem." You might be describing most of slashdot and the linux crowd?
  • In other news, half of teens don't understand what the word "addicted" means.

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