Tuesday, November 15, 2005

FT says that wireless addiction could be new OCD

Catch up after a weekend away and today I get the opportunity to read the Mobility Special in the Weekend edition of the FT.

In typical fashion Richard Waters has written an excellent article on how academics are viewing the development of Wireless in its impact on Social Habits. The work of Keio University in Japan is highlighted, and a quick Google brings up Mizuko Ito's paper on Personal Portable Pedestrian from a Conference in Korea last year. In this paper the author expands on the arguement of the FT article that mobile has effected the development of new Urban Ecologies. It is the social rules of the Japanese Train system for example that have fueled the development of mobile data because of the high level of social regulation means that users put their phones in "manner mode"

The interesting thing is that most mobile communication was done with a small circle of close friends and family, generally 2-5 others but no more than 10. This being the case what is the effect on online social communites such as LinkedIn and Ryze where we are encouraged to build networks in the hundreds?

This "tele-coccoon" is a socail formation that rely on text messaging to share an always onb relationship with their small intimate community signaling their unavailability from the group with messages such as "I'm taking a bath now" and sending good night messgaes.

In developing such indept relationships are we not at risk of developing some form of OCD which will see problems with withdrawl and anxity given the quality of network coverage here in Europe.

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