Thursday, April 28, 2016

Media Binge and Fast

When we were first told about the media binge and fast, I didn’t want to do it. I thought it would be just a hassle and I would get nothing out of it. The more that it was explained, the more I got excited about it. My roommate wouldn’t be able to judge me for watching The Office and playing games on my phone, and if she said something I could just tell her, “It’s fine, it’s for a class”. When I started the binge, I tried to do as much as possible. I would watch Netflix and be on Twitter or play a game. I had to start packing up my room to move out also so I would carry my computer around while I put away all of my belongings. Although I wish I could say this isn’t normal, this wasn’t that much different from what I normally do. When I put away my laundry or clean my room, I often also have Netflix on in the background. I tried to do more than normal, but it seemed to be similar to my normal routine. I also tried to do my homework while listening to music. I tried to watch Netflix, but I couldn’t get anything done because I wasn’t able to focus on either thing. It took me much longer to do my homework even when I was just listening to music than it normally takes when I do it in silence. I then did the media fast. I wasn’t as good at staying off my phone as I hoped I would be, but I did my best. Although this may be cliché, it made me realize just how much I am on my phone and not paying attention to the things around me. I got my homework done faster and was able to go out and do things instead of being up quite as late. Although it didn’t exactly change my life, as I still continue to be on my phone and watch a show after the fast, it made me realize how much easier it is to do things without being attached to my phone. In the summers I work at a camp where there is only cell service in one spot, so you can’t really use your phone. I love to be there because it is like a three month long media fast. It truly makes you realize how much more you can do without your phone. I wish that I could take that mentality and use it more often, but as soon as I get back to the real world, I get sucked right back in to using my phone all the time. This class has made me very aware of the way the internet changes the things you see, through filter bubbles and algorithms, and I think that even though this wasn’t the primary thing I got out of the media binge, it also made me see more things I wouldn’t have seen before. The longer I was on my phone, the more likely I was to click on a link I wouldn’t normally have clicked on, or that was buried deep in my Facebook feed. I was able to see some of the posts by people I don’t normally see and it was very interesting. The main thing that I think I got out of this media binge and fast was that it is best to use your devices in moderation. Don’t watch Netflix and be on your phone, because your brain is going to be scattered and you won’t absorb as much from Twitter and you will miss important parts of the show you are watching. 

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