9 Ways You Can Begin Purging Your Internet Addiction

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Sep 6, 2017 12:00:00 PM

human-adaptability-chart.jpgAccording to a recent interview in "GQ" (Gentlemen's Quarterly) Magazine, Aziz Ansari revealed he recently quit the internet. Heh, yeah, dude, that owns. That owns, like, big time.

Look, there are worse role models in the world than Aziz Ansari. The guy crafted a non-genre masterclass in tasteful television with "Master of None" over on Netflix and taught a generation of men in their 30s that being a cock to women isn't fashionable.

But quitting the internet? Aziz, that is a confident move. That is game atop game, man. It's like the most punk rock thing you can do in 2017. Not many could pull it off, because the world is full of psychos and we need to talk to each other to maintain the panicked high that gets us from sunrise to sunset. Rumor has it, Christopher Nolan doesn't use or email or even own a cell phone (or let people sit in chairs on his movie sets). But I believe that's only a symptom of Nolan being a British person and is not a deliberate choice.

Nevertheless, it got me thinking: how can a normal person purge their internet addiction?

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Topics: technology

The Commute Will Never Die (Or, The Cursed Ledger of Solidarity and Envy)

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Nov 15, 2016 12:00:00 PM

snowpiercer-commute.gifThe commute is a sacred American institution. Everyone's gotta work, except those who don't. Everyone's gotta leave the comfort of their homes, except those who don't. This is the undying commonality that assures all knucklhead urbanites and dust-chewing sons of the soil will have something to hate.

The telephone did not kill the commute. Email did not kill the commute. The year-3000 Jetsons-style video chat did not kill the commute. The commute will never die because it's the members-only club signifying solidarity and envy.

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Topics: technology, millennials

Simple Answers no. 9: Why do websites write clickbait article headlines?

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Jul 27, 2016 12:00:00 PM

what-is-clickbait.gifThis is a recurring segment, with a recently-updated title, "Simple Answers," where I gather the questions I come across on the Internet in a given week, and provide a straightforward answer.

This week's question again concerns clickbait.

Clickbait: your secret six-times per-day interaction with Russia you probably weren't looking forward to.

Here's your chance to have a simple question answered.

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Topics: technology, online etiquette, whiny questions, simple answers

Simple Answers no. 8: Why do people hate Pokemon Go?

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Jul 18, 2016 12:00:00 PM

pokemon-go-squirtle.jpgThis is a recurring segment, with a recently-updated title, "Simple Answers," where I gather the questions I come across on the Internet in a given week, and provide a straightforward answer.

This week's question again concerns the summertime mobile-phone phenomenon, Pokemon Go.

Never mind the fact that the game is inviting traumatized war veterans and autistic children to socialize in public in a safe environment, there are clusters of people that are outright opposed to the game.

Why is that?

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Topics: technology, online etiquette, Review, video games

Simple Answers no. 7: Why is it all bad news in the summer time?

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Jul 11, 2016 12:00:00 PM

summer-fireworks-short.gifThis is a recurring segment, with a recently-updated title, "Simple Answers," where I gather the questions I come across on the Internet in a given week, and provide a straightforward answer.

This week's question again concerns the toxic trash-garden the internet becomes during the summertime.

It's all bad news, all the time, isn't it? It's all sensationalistic fireballs kicking off our brains. Why does it feel like it's a string of bad news in the summer time?

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Topics: technology, online etiquette

Whiny Questions, Simple Answers no. 1: Why Is Overwatch Praised More Than Battleborn And Star Wars Battlefront?

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: May 30, 2016 12:00:00 PM

overwatch-roster.jpg

This is a recurring segment, "Whiny Questions, Simple Answers," where I gather the whiniest question I come across on the Internet in a given week, and provide a straightforward answer.

This week's questions concerns the recently-released Overwatch, and why it is so immediately beloved in comparison to its similarly-structured competition.

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Topics: video games, technology

Speaking In Tongues: Making Sense Of The Internet's Weird, Sad Twin-Language

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: May 27, 2016 12:00:00 PM

two-statues.pngBi-partisanship is bad enough in America, and in the world, thanks to the wedge issues Republicans jammed into their palms in the early 2000s, and along with that, the need for subtlety was dragged down to the ocean floor. Combined with written information's ultra-proliferation, and non-empathetic interaction rising at roughly the same time, we've arrived at an Internet with its own weird, sad twin-language.

The need for singular, specific words lessened, as there were fewer states of mind we were capable of properly conveying via the internet's dominant, limiting pathways. There was no need to mold words together into thoughtful exercises that may exercise a reader, too. The internet defined its own shorthand lexicon and repeated the words and phrases until they were sub-cultural memes, a streamlined text-form communication fit for the medium.

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Topics: online etiquette, technology

What Are The Implications Of Amazon Echo, Google Home, And Other Voice-Activated Assistants?

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: May 23, 2016 12:00:00 PM

io16-logo.jpgI am divided on whether to accept the voice-activated future that RoboCop promised me from its chromed-out Reagan-esque heckscape. The movie was a satire, I suppose that should be all the warning required.

Google has announced a deluge of more learning algorithms built into in-home speakers and chat-apps at their I/O 2016 convension. This is their big move, a heave of lunar gravity set to move ocean tides, and all who float upon their ocean. They already possess a thousand-million bits of data on consumers. So what's this mean?

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Topics: technology, marketing

Industry Leaders Are Learning Nothing From Their Million-Dollar Cyber Attacks

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Nov 23, 2015 11:26:58 AM

sony-logo.jpgAccessing point-of-sale data on hundreds of thousands of Target stores, hackers lifted the credit card information from 40 million customer accounts on Black Friday, 2013. Elementary malware bounced the seized numbers to a rented server in Russia. Target’s $1.6 million worth of Pentagon-level security proved insufficient defense.

In October, 2014, Sony Pictures was hacked, and intruders stole everything that wasn’t nailed down—production notes on The Amazing Spider-Man 2, personal employee data, and heated email exchanges between studio executives. It’s all indexed on Wikileaks now.

Most recent of all, 1.1 million personal electronic health records, valued at $60-70 apiece, were stolen in a cyber attack on Washington D.C.-area CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield servers. The data was reported stolen on May 14, 2015.

Trouble is, evidence shows the actual theft occurred in June, 2014.

Hackers have smelled the blood in the water. Customer data was snatched up. Millions were stolen. Public trust was weakened. The revelation that there was almost zero accountability or regulatory reformation afterward is perhaps the most upsetting of all.

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Topics: technology

Etiquette For Using Your Smartphone While In The Bathroom (Dude, DON'T)

Written by: Alex Crumb | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Sep 26, 2012 12:00:00 PM

smartphone-bathroom.jpgBro, stop using your phone in the bathroom. 

It's got nothing to do with germs. I'm almost positive the keyboard at your desk has more bacteria on it than a urinal. Your hands will touch far filthier things in a regular workday, like the handle on a supermarket shopping basket, or any surface within 200 years of a subway stop.

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Topics: technology, online etiquette

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