First a minute; then ten; then before you know it, two hours have passed stalking God knows who. Next to the Internet, social media is probably the greatest thing that ever existed – until you couldn’t take your eyes off that blue, blue screen, that is. It’s uncontrollable, untameable, almost like being possessed by a social hungry poltergeist. But thanks to two Ph.D candidates at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Robert R. Morris and Dan McDuff, social media addiction can now be shocked out of you in an effort curb this counter-productive habit.
Image above via robertrmorris.org
Image via robertrmorris.org
Coining it the Pavlov Poke, after the famous Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov who published his experimental success on thoroughly starving conditioning dogs, these two IT geeks have created a system that will literally send electrical pulses to the user if they spend too much time on social media or other distracting websites. Now, how about that?
And spicing up your hairdo while you’re at it.
Image via tomcrutchfield.wordpress.com
As the brain registers your displeasure of being shocked, your behaviour will tend to be modified to avoid encountering the shock again, thus staying off social media as a whole (unless, of course, you’re a masochist or the shocking stimuli happened to come from one too many videos of Miley Cyrus twerk-ing – we all can’t seem to take our eyes off that).
Call it inhumane, call it barbaric, but these two have a damn good point that we should all be looking to solve. Social Media has gone far from being used as a social tool to keep in touch to being the cause of thousands of users feeling inadequate about themselves after a good session of stalking fake-internet-plastic displays of their friends “lives”. It is by time something be done about it.
Hmm, maybe a stick-on “Facebook patch” next?
Image via abcnews.go.com