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Computer - featuredThe National Day of Unplugging starts at sundown.

USA Today reports:

Part of the Sabbath Manifesto, the campaign is designed to get people to slow down in an increasingly hectic world, an idea inspired by that most un-Microsoft of documents, the Old Testament.

In short, God rested on the seventh day — and so should you.


All this makes perfect sense to David Sitt, a psychology lecturer at Baruch College in New York, who coined the term “cell-ibacy” to describe what he thinks are vital recesses from today’s world. For example, he advises people to put their phones in brown paper bags during dinners with friends.

There have also been high schools and colleges that challenge students to stay offline for a full day or week.

I don’t like these exercises for several reasons. First, they assume there’s something inherently bad about technology and connectivity. This is the world we live in and I happen to enjoy it. Second, the campaigns equate the avoidance of social media use with a giant mental test of endurance. Good for you for staying off Facebook. You proved…what? Finally, I don’t like someone telling me what’s good for me. If I want to take a break, I’ll take a break.

There’s no question smartphones, social media and constant Internet access have consequences. But it’s better to work out those issues than turn away, even for a day.

Links of the Day:

– State test scores will plunge, as the Common Core standards are rolled out for the first time. Students and schools are totally unprepared.

– Windstream is on track to open its Midtown offices in July.

– New York state is giving $420 million in tax credits to the TV and movie industry this year.

– The Urban Land Institute once told Rochester redeveloping Midtown would take a lot of public money. It told Buffalo the same thing about HSBC Tower.

– Class rings are still important to many high school students.

– The feel good story of the day, about a baby found in a subway.

3 Responses to Cell-ibacy? No thanks.

  1. March 1, 2013 at 12:20 pm ShaneBertou responds:

    I think it just encourages people to slow down. It’s good for the soul. Which is what the Sabbath was intended to do in the first place.

  2. Totally agree. Although this is kind of gimmicky, it still perpetuates our sick fascination with everything being either ON or OFF. We don’t seem to be able to handle moderation, as a group.

  3. March 1, 2013 at 12:47 pm Ginny Maier responds:

    Love that subway story. Beautiful!

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