"Tech Addicts" Dodge Human Contact for Days
Up to 3% of us are so hooked to the internet and texting that we avoid spoken conversation for 48 hours at a time.
For technology addicts, digital communications may eclipse face-to-face human contact entirely, according to new research from UK digital marketing company DNX. The study of 1,000 British adults found 16% to be "digitally dominant"—meaning they communicate mainly via texting or the internet. And about 19% of this group—3% of the overall total—are so dependent on technology that they may go 48 hours or more without any spoken interaction at all. These "techno addicts" are four times less likely to buy food from a store, preferring to order meals online or from a vending machine. They're also more likely to use an ATM over a teller, for example, and to utilize other forms of digital customer service in place of human interaction wherever possible. "The digital revolution has given us all immense choice in the way we deal with situations from financial transactions to purchasing goods" says Drew Nicholson of DNX, "but it should not be used to replace the art of conversation and human contact. There are a significant minority who are using the far-reaching benefits of digital as a substitute for real personal engagement."