There is a new book coming out in a few days called Digital Minimalism that people might be interested in.
We see these tools, and we have this narrative that, “You can do this on Facebook,” or “This new feature on this device means you can do this, which would be convenient.” What you don’t factor in is, “Okay, well what’s the cost in terms of my time attention required to have this device in my life?” Facebook might have some particular thing that’s valuable, but then you have the average U.S. user spending something like 50 minutes a day on Facebook products. That’s actually a pretty big [amount of life] that you’re now trading in order to get whatever the potential small benefit is.
I’m looking forward to reading the book, because I’ve been moving in that direction over the past couple of years. Some of the things I’ve done already:
- I left Facebook and all of their other sites, including Instagram and What’s App. (Humans should read books not timelines.)
- I removed nearly all of the apps from my smart phone and turned off notifications for all but three of them.
- I started shopping around for a simple flip phone to replace my smartphone when it finally breaks (it’s about to go).
- Switched to an email system based on Mutt, which allows me to rapidly delete emails in the morning before replying to specific ones in a slower email client. I spend much less time on email with this system.
I’ll post a summary of the book after I read it.