Back online, somewhat ambivalently


People sent me a lot of postcards during the digital-detox experiment, but this one is probably my favorite since it combines postcard, newspaper and typewriting all in one.


After six months of immersing myself in Slow Media, I’m back online now — though still not using a cellphone. Interwebbing was fun for the first few days, but surprisingly the excitement faded fast.

Since starting the experiment in July, I have used payphones and yellow pages and typewriters… penned piles of letters and postcards… watched all my VHS tapes and listened to all my audiocassettes (along with some vinyl, until my record-player broke)… devoured a huge stack of newspapers and books… deciphered many a printed map…. and taken photographs with disposable cameras, 35mm film and Polaroids.

It was really fun. And honestly, life without digital media wasn’t that hard, folks. You should try it. Maybe just for a day, or a weekend?

Next up: I might perform a week of silent meditation to challenge the assumption that we need to speak, or maybe I’ll stop washing my hair for a few months to prove that we don’t need shampoo.

“Workers of the World, Unplug!”

What does the Slow Media Movement have in common with Slow Food? Roger Buddenberg of the Omaha World-Herald explains this, and more, in his story about the digital backlash.

The article describes how people are giving up the Internet for Lent; students are taking stress-management classes to learn how to not be distracted; and coaches are taking cellphones away from players to improve performance.

Buddenberg also quotes a clinical psychologist who says that digital media is
"fundamentally ruining the quality people's lives" and jokes that he wants "to be the mayor" of the Slow Media Movement. (No Foursquare required for that!).