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How new technologies make us addicted

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In his book “Don’t Come Off!” Adam Alter writes that many software and application developers specifically use elements of behavioral addiction so that people can use their products for as long as possible.

There are 6 signs of behavioral addiction. And if you find them using this or that application, then be on your guard. You can be used. The signs are as follows:

  • Convincing goals that you want to achieve.
  • Unpredictable positive feedback.
  • A sense of gradual progress and improvement.
  • Tasks that get more difficult over time.
  • Unsolved problems.
  • Strong social bonds.

Modern behavioral addictions have at least one of these features. Instagram is addictive because some photos get a lot of likes and others are less liked. In pursuit of likes, users post one photo after another, waiting for a reaction to them, and constantly return to the site to check how they were received, whether there are any new likes. Gamers play online games for several days in a row because they have to complete game missions and because they have formed strong social bonds with other gamers.

Our environment is a very breeding ground for addictions. An alcoholic can bypass old friends and places of their congestion like bars. But what about a person who is struggling with Internet addiction in a world where it is impossible to give up the Internet? He is forced to use e-mail, a computer and a smartphone, because most jobs involve using them. Abstaining from high technology is impossible, but there are alternatives.

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