The Conversation: Why those scary claims about technology addiction are rubbish

How concerned should people be about the psychological effects of screen time?

Balancing technology use with other aspects of daily life seems reasonable, but there is a lot of conflicting advice about where that balance should be.

Much of the discussion – including the World Health Organization’s recent decision to declare “gaming disorder” an “addictive behavior disorder” — is framed around fighting “addiction” to technology. But to me, that resembles a moral panic, giving voice to scary claims based on weak data.

For example, in April 2018, television journalist Katie Couric’s “America Inside Out” program focused on the effects of technology on people’s brains.

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