Law in the Internet Society

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JoseMirandaSecondEssay 3 - 01 Apr 2018 - Main.EbenMoglen
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60 Days Without a Smart Phone

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 Progress. I prefer life without a smart phone, and I plan to continue it. I cannot say it does not come without downsides. I sometimes drive the longer route home, I no longer have the ability to answer any trivia question immediately, and at times it can be difficult for people to reach me. But the benefits here outweigh the shortcomings. I no longer feel like a passive observer of my computing behaviors; I am now the conscious agent of them. This has everything to do with the fact that I no longer carry around an object designed to predict and dictate my behavior. I also changed a variety of other computing habits in support of this goal, e.g. I use Duck Duck Go as a search engine, I deleted all my social media profiles, I use a browser that lets me VPN encrypt my local web traffic, and I stopped watching Netflix. Using the Net now feels a lot less like plugging into a dopamine driven feed, and much more like using a tool designed to enhance my conscious thoughts. I also spend more time in the now. It is not always easy to be present. Indeed we need respite from it; we must sometimes be absent, because to be present is to be aware that you exist, and to be aware that you exist is to suffer. Smart phones are like existential crutches. They enable your fear of living in the moment; they delay coping with a hard truth about life – you cannot escape suffering.

-- By JoseMiranda - 04 Jan 2018 \ No newline at end of file


I think the point of the essay is achieved in this draft. Documenting what happened isn't really possible in 1,000 words, but the immediacy of the writing is what mattered to the task, and I don't think revising improves that. A different piece, which you don't need to write here and now, deals with the professional consequences of the decision. That too becomes a fascinating subject, as people with whom you work assume that the habits of distraction, rapid shallow research, and constant connection without time for contemplation are the way that work is done.

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Revision 3r3 - 01 Apr 2018 - 13:52:07 - EbenMoglen
Revision 2r2 - 05 Jan 2018 - 03:13:26 - JoseMiranda
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