People of all ages are turning to social media to stay connected, but unlike previous generations, today’s teens and young adults have been raised from the start in a world that’s hyperconnected. How does it – and how will it – impact their lives?
Technology experts are almost evenly split when asked about the positive and negative influences of hyperconnectivity on the younger generation. 55 percent agreed the future would be positive. 42 percent agreed the future would be negative. There are strong arguments in favor of each position.
- They will be able to count on the internet as their external brain.
- They will be able to learn more information.
- Young people’s brains are being wired differently to adapt.
- They will become quick-thinking multitaskers.
- They will be adept at finding answers to questions efficiently.
- It will allow future generations to transform things like education.
- They will develop a thirst for instant gratification.
- They will become shallow consumers of information.
- They will settle for quick choices due to lack of patience.
- They will lack deep thinking capabilities and won’t be able to retain information.
- They will lack face-to-face social skills and have short attention spans.
- They will depend on their devices in unhealthy ways.
- Among older teen girls who are smartphone owners, 55% say they use the internet mostly from their phone. This is notable since boys and girls are equally likely to be smartphone owners.
Which life skills will be most desired in the future? The survey respondents suggested:
- Problem solving through cooperative work.
- Ability to search effectively for quality information online.
- Ability to bring together details from many sources.
- Being strategically future-minded.
- The ability to concentrate.
- The ability to distinguish between “noise” and valuable information.
We’ve illustrated “The Hyperconnected Life” debate in this handy infographic: