You ever go hiking overnight? You have to find a campground before dark, build a fire, make dinner? And after dinner there are only two things to do: talk or sleep. It is one of the few places where there aren’t electronic distractions to entertain us.
Americans use a variety of ways to entertain ourselves when we have downtime. Between video games, iPod, laptops, and TVs we are pretty successful at amusing ourselves, by ourselves. We even use electronics when being social. “Come on over and watch a DVD.”
Sony just reported big earning, thanks to consumer electronics. Microsoft’s numbers are strong too, thanks to strong PC software sales. Nintendo’s net is soaring, Acer is up, and the list goes on and on. Social computing is the rage today, and though that is social, it’s still a step removed from true interactive social behavior. “I’ll give you a Super Poke on Facebook, that should cheer you up.”
Today, for way too many people, consumer electronics replace person-to-person contact. If we allow it to happen for too many generations, we are likely to have a lot more anti-social behavior and down the road the fastest selling electronics will likely be a therapists in a box.