If it’s not on Instagram, it probably didn’t happen.

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Without our phones we feel naked, it is simple as that. We even pick phone cases that will match our outfits or will look good being held. All the technology and devices we own, whether your phone, tablets or computers, no longer are recognised as objects to us, but are considered an extra limb, your best friend or even bae. So maybe our phone obsession is getting out of control.

Here are some stories, courtesy of Elite Daily, that may hopefully scare you into going without your phone for one day or hour.

1. You might be sick.

Phone addiction has an official name, and there are actual treatment centers for it around the world. If you fear lack of access to technology… you have nomophobia, a term developed in Britain in 2008.


2. At the very least, it’s making you crazy.

A study out of Indiana University found that 89 percent of undergrads had experienced a “phantom” vibration, thinking they had felt a phone notification when there wasn’t one.

When your phone messes with your mind and sensations, you know you’re hopelessly addicted.


3. It’s kind of replacing your boyfriend.

According to TIME, 80 percent of 18-24 year old Americans sleep with their phones right beside them, for easy access first and last thing. If your phone is the only thing keeping you company in bed, it may be time to get out more.


4. It’s ruining your work and play.

Psychologist David Sheffield carried out a study in the UK, from Staffordshire University. He was shocked to find that  “7 percent said the use of mobile phones had caused them to lose a relationship or job.”

5. It’s become more of a priority than basic human essentials.

Of the roughly 7 billion people in the world, 6 billion own a cell phone. According to the UN, only 4.5 billion own a toilet. Additionally, more people own a phone than have access to running water. What even is happening?


6. What happens when you’re without your phone is terrifying.

One in five school kids in South Korea experience anxiety, depression and inability to sleep when separated from his or her phone, according to this Wall Street Journal article.

The Government is now having to put time and money into dealing with phone addiction and its negative side effects. South Korea is one of the few countries trying to tackle this addiction.


7. You forget how to live in the real world.

The same Wall Street Journal article states that people in South Korea are losing social skills rapidly. Kids are no longer good at reading facial expressions or intonations.


8. The numbers are staggering.

Data collected by a screenlock app say the average person unlocks his or her phone to check it 110 times a day. Some check it up to 900 times. That sounds like a huge waste of time, and worryingly compulsive.

If we did anything else 110 times a day, we’d be hospitalized.


9. Your phone is disgustingly dirty.

If you shy away from public toilets, you may be interested to know your phone is 18 times dirtier than the average public bathroom. From touching money, to touching dirty things, to sweating, your phone comes into contact with whatever you do.

And the more you use it, the worse it is. When did you last clean your phone or screen?


10.You could get really, really sick.

I hate to break it to you, but those hours you spend chatting on your cell as you walk to work or lie in the bath are really bad for you. For every 100 hours you speak on the phone (easily done for the addicts out there), your risk of brain cancer increases by 5 percent.

Try to keep calls short, and, linking back to point number 8, try to save the long conversations for in-person.


Time to check out some apps that might be able to help your ween off it – 2 Free Apps

x BL x

See more: 15 Scary Facts About Your Obsession With Your Phone That Should Worry You For The Future

What Does FOBO Actually Look Like?

Photographer Eric Pickersgill has created a series of photographs titled “Removed” where he has photoshopped out the phone.

This concept was inspired by his experience at a restaurant

Family sitting next to me at Ilium café in Troy, NY is so disconnected from one another. Not much talking. Father and two daughters have their own phones out. Mom doesn’t have one or chooses to leave it put away. She stares out the window, sad and alone in the company of her closest family. Dad looks up every so often to announce some obscure piece of info he found online. Twice he goes on about a large fish that was caught. No one replies. I am saddened by the use of technology for interaction in exchange for not interacting. This has never happened before and I doubt we have scratched the surface of the social impact of this new experience. Mom has her phone out now.

Pickergill explains the significance behind the photos and what they really mean. FOBO taking over and disconnecting us from everyone around us.

The joining of people to devices has been rapid and unalterable. The application of the personal device in daily life has made tasks take less time. Far away places and people feel closer than ever before. Despite the obvious benefits that these advances in technology have contributed to society, the social and physical implications are slowly revealing themselves. In similar ways that photography transformed the lived experience into the photographable, performable, and reproducible experience, personal devices are shifting behaviors while simultaneously blending into the landscape by taking form as being one with the body. This phantom limb is used as a way of signaling busyness and unapproachability to strangers while existing as an addictive force that promotes the splitting of attention between those who are physically with you and those who are not.

Check the gallery to see the photograph series:

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To see more – http://ericpickersgill.com/Removed

X BL x

Texting lanes: Is this taking it too far?

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Utah is apparently introducing texting lanes??? This is now becoming ridiculous. Are we struggling that much to lift our heads? This new “culture of walking and texting” is happening whether we are ready or not.

FOBO is a big issue at universities and colleges around the world as teenagers and young adults are the biggest culprits for phone ownership. So Utah Valley University (UVU) is taking it upon themselves to assist with distracted students crashing and has painted a ‘texting lane’ onto one of the staircases at the university. It divides the staircase into three sections – walkers, runners and texters.utah-uni-texting-lane-1-517x689

Matt Bambrough, creative director at UVU, commented “You have 18-to-24 year olds walking down the hall with smartphones, you’re almost bound to run into someone somewhere; it’s something we’re dealing with in this day and age.”

But lets be real though who hasn’t walked into someone around uni while on your phone or had to dodge someone walking and on their phones. The worst is when you are stuck behind a slow walker who is on their phone making you late to class or wherever you have to go.

Utah is the only place doing this though, so maybe we actually need to take this seriously instead of mocking the ridiculousness of this. As phone addiction and ownership continues to grow rapidly, the distracted phone user is potentially a risk to others and themselves. I know I have walked into walls and doors while texting or scrolling through my insta feed.

So should our Australian universities join this new trend or is it just taking it too far? 

In a city in Belgium they have created several ‘text walking lanes’ around the city  and Chinese city of Chongqing has created China’s first ever ‘mobile phone sidewalks’. One lane is designated for non-mobile users and the other for mobile users. To further improve the structure of the sidewalks, they have split each lane for the different directions.

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Belgium’s text-walking lanes

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China’s mobile phone sidewalks

 

 

 

 

 

According to a report by research firm Pew, pedestrian injuries due to handset distraction has increased by 35 percent within the last five years. The report also outlines that other US states have tried to combat ‘text-walkers’ and texting related pedestrian accidents. Utah and New Jersey have tried fines for wandering texters and reducing speed limits in certain areas for safety.

x BL x

 

Asia’s Smartphone Usage Regulations

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Children starting at an early age how to use smartphones and ipads

Asia is the birthplace of the selfie stick and emojis, so it is no surprise they are the forerunners in increased mobile addiction and usage. For example, in Singapore smartphones have been integrated into the school curriculum and homework is sometimes issued via WhatsApp. In Japan, they have formed a subculture called keitai culture, meaning mobile phone culture. The new Instagram trends of food porn has led to this increasing new culture encouraging addiction.

They have likened smartphone usage to mental disorders and related it to drug addiction. A psychiatrist Thomas Lee has stated that “like drug addicts, smartphone addicts will also display withdrawal symptoms like restlessness, anxiety and even anger”. This is what these countries are trying to combat with their regulations and policies.

In South Korea, they released a government app to monitor usage among teenagers and imposed restrictions of using online games after midnight. A study conducted in 2015 in South Korea found that 25% of children aged between 11 and 12 where addicted to smartphones and spend on average 5.4 hours on them daily.

China has found a way to combat this addiction with a boot camp. This camp is for young Chinese people who are about to begin college and university and is for them to discipline themselves and fix their mobile habits. Challenges such as holding their phone between their teeth and psychical military exercises are some of the  activities conducted at the camp.

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Should Australia be following similar lines and employing tactics to control mobile usages?

Question we should be asking ourselves are:

  • Is this mobile addiction getting out of hand?
  • Are these methods too intense and extreme or what we need?
  • Is it becoming a a mental heath disorder and an anxiety similar to drug addiction?
  • Is mobile addiction just the new way of living and we should get with the times?

x BL x

2 Best Free Apps to Help Monitor Time

Needing help to monitor your usage and time online? Thankfully there are 2 great free apps that assist you in just that. Check them out and download them to help monitor your usage and time spent on your phone.

  1. Breakfree App – Free (Apple/Android)

http://www.breakfree-app.com/

This app is aimed at controlling your phone addiction and helping you maintain a healthy digital lifestyle. It is available on both Apple and Android stores. The app monitors  your phone and app usage and provides you with graphs, stats and app guides to help you control your usage and addition.

The app comes with parental controls as well, so for parents who want to monitor and schedule internet hours. You can help yourself with management tools to disable your phone for certain periods, find out which apps are consuming most of your time and provide usage.

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2. Moment – Free (Apple only)

https://inthemoment.io/

This app tracks how much you use your apple devices. It allows you to set daily limits and reminders if you go over. At the moment it is only available on Apple but will be rolled out for Android users soon. The main aim for this app is to help users find the balance between connected and disconnected. You can’t go complete cold turkey when addicted, so you need to ease yourself off the phone.

They have just released Moment Family where you can track your family’s usage  and set up times for your family to be mobile free. It also has the features of tracking your location throughout the day and how long you have spent there.

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We should now be able to have greater control over when and how we use our phones. There are more apps coming through to provides similar and different features. With teenagers and young adults spending more and more time on screens, the percentage of ‘mobile addicts’ is rising.

x BL x

10 Signs You Have FOBO

Move over FOMO, FOBO has come to town and the struggle is real. Who isn’t addiction to their phones these day. According to a recent Facebook study,  ‘Coming of Age Onscreen‘, 70% of girls and boys aged 13-24, need to check their phones wherever they are.

These days smartphones definitely don’t help this addiction. Everything we need we can access with a click of a button. Everything has apps, from banking, blogging, social media, your local gym, fast food to the best Instagram editing tools. 58% of smartphone users, particularly the 18-34 age group, can’t go without their phones for at least 1 hour, according to the Lookout ‘Mobile Mindset Study‘.

We are all so connected to our phones that if we don’t have them with us or we can’t find it we go into a mild panic. I’m sure most of us sit watching TV with our phones in our hand, just in case we could miss something. The signs of suffering for FOBO are further explained in the next post.

So here is the important question; how bad is your FOBO? How many of these signs do you find yourself relating to?

  1. Your first priority when at a friend’s house is asking if they have Wi-Fi and what’s their password

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2. The last thing you do before going to bed is check your phone. What happens if you miss something = world is over.

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3. You treat it like it’s an extra limb

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4. Planes and bad reception areas are the devil’s spawn

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5. You’re phone has become bae

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6. Misplacing your phone is like misplacing a child

Jennifer Lawrence interview MOM

7. You carry around battery chargers.

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8. Buffering and slow loading pages = #dead

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9. 1% feels like Zayn leaving One Direction all over again

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10. You’re phone sleeps next to you….snuggle buddies

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Maybe it might be time for an intervention. So how many do you relate to? Do you maybe have a slight case of FOBO?

x BL x

Celebrity Phone Obsession

You are not the only one addicted to your phones – celebrities can’t let go either.

Gone is the etiquette of talking face to face without the distraction of a phone alert, especially when there is an important text message or someone to respond to. To be honest, in today’s world it is more likely you are trying to avoid talking to someone so you look busy.

Doesn’t matter the event or what these celebs are doing, nothing can separate them from their prized possessions. Check out the gallery of sighted celebs…

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x BL x