This chapter of the Frontline video really hit a chord in me. It also put a lot of things in perspective, not only with where things are now in the US, but how things were back when technology was on the rise. It was also a great contrast with the struggle of those addicted to computer games, and the way that current young ones are being schooled in online etiquette.
It’s hard seeing that kind of addiction being so bad that they need to create a support group to “save” some of these kids. And the one boy they covered didn’t even seem phased by it. No emotion whatsoever; he was just going to go right back to that computer as if nothing had ever happened. I remember playing video games when I was a kid, but not to that extent. It just wasn’t where my head was. The sad thing also, is that it’s not like we don’t have that in our society today. There are many articles and research about the isolation factor of video games for youth, as well as the negative effect it can have on grades. It only makes sense: less time on school=lower scores.
Also, the way Doug Rushkoff must have felt when seeing that game addict therapy camp must have been harsh. As someone who advocated for technology over a 2 decade span, it must feel weird to see a rise in a facet of tech that you did not expect. My father did the same kind of thing back in the 90’s by traveling around the world lecturing on integrating educational TV in the classroom (Cable in the Classroom). Which goes to the next point seamlessly.
Watching those kids in the school setting learn about proper online etiquette made me smile and laugh. That is what we should be doing for the little ones; just for a small segment of the day, mainly because they are so young. Rushkoff said this kind of thing would never fly in America, but why not? Having sing-alongs and encouraging posters is RIGHT THERE with what K-2 is all about, and with those being the formative years, they will develop digital manners the same way the would develop table manners. Maybe then, would the comment section of every article, lame or important, be free of the negative nastiness it is currently plagued with. Who taught us to be nice and courteous on the internet? No one. But someone should be. It would a milestone for digital literacy.