By Doug Cumming
Students in one of my classes were assigned to keep a log of their media consumption for a day or two. One student worried that she wouldn’t have much to record. She called herself a newspaper and magazine person and a TV-news watcher, and she said she has little time for these while at college. But after completing her log, she realized that she was as hooked on the instant gratification of social media and mobile phone apps as any of her peers.
When she and other freshman females had to leave their mobile phones in the dorms during rush parties at sorority houses, she nearly had a “mini heart attack” feeling for her phone to check the time. She said it gave them all a lost feeling to be without their phones.
Cumming is a journalism professor at Washington & Lee University.