New! Distracted Featured in "Grace Notes" Exhibit at New York Society Library from January 19 to February 22 - New York City

Distracted Excerpt in New Philosopher, the world’s go-to philosophy magazine

I am honored that the renowned global philosophy-design magazine New Philosopher is excerpting part of the intro to my book Distracted in its fascinating new issue, “Distraction Rules.” In the excerpt, I argue that rising levels of techno-distraction and the splintered thoughts that accompany this shift are illustrative of a darkening age. In other words, we may be increasingly too inattentive to see and comprehend the costs of this new way of life.

I’ve been called alarmist for sounding this warning as far back as 2008, when Distracted first came out. But in response, I argue that it’s critical, more so than ever, to ask hard questions about where technology is leading us. If we don’t consider even outlier possible costs to these inventions, then we are truly giving up our ability to control our futures – and our technologies. This skepticism is even more important at a time when increasingly powerful AI systems likely will have more control over our world than humans will. For further detail, see this exciting new report on the Internet and the Future, in which I and a majority of leading experts polled by the Pew Research Center and Elon University express deep worries about humanity’s fate in an increasingly tech-centric era.

If you haven’t seen New Philosopher, now is a great time. The new issue Distraction Rules is chock-full of brilliant essays and provocative artwork that delve into pressing questions about attention. How can we thrive as humans while embedding attention-corrosive technologies into our lives? And, as editor Antonia Case asks, is technology “pulling us here and there almost without our consent?,” or does our distraction simply reflect humanity’s innate need for constant novelty and escapism? In other words, what are we choosing?

Here is a link to my excerpt, “Land of Distraction,” in New Philosopher, Issue 39.

new-philosopher-land-of-distraction.pdf (11 downloads)