Six years ago I tried to get a word in the dictionary and I want to continue to use it, as I see it as more and more a part of our future. In an always-on culture with technology a part of our every moment the idea of atechagoraphobia (at one point I had termed it Technagoraphobia) is more evident. Atechagoraphobia exists as the ‘cloud’ of online services continues to grow and the persistence of online becomes the norm, people will suffer from the fear of being in “open places w/o technology”. (Example: John never would go camping with us because he was afraid of being offline from his iPhone.)
1. A morbid fear of being in open spaces without technology.
How do we live more intentionally in the hyper-connected reality we are in? What is a counter culture look like that is present in the moment.
Another word will need to be created to describe people who only feel ‘real life’ events are valid when they are posted online. Do you ever feel the urge to post something in Facebook as it’s happening rather than just experiencing the moment with those present? Yesterday I watched a football game and 5 guys (myself included) brought out our phones at times to take pictures, tweet, status update, etc. What boundaries and intentional habits do we need to create?
Here is a list of questions as a Christian I have to ask myself:
1. Why are you using your phone? Is it a form of escape or distraction? Are you using it for a purpose or to pass time? If so, what does that reveal about your heart?
2. Is technology and media stealing attention from your family or community? Do they get second-best treatment as you work on ‘one last update’?
3. Are you more enamored with progress and the next iPhone app? Are you astonished with the gospel?
I’ve reflected a bit on these ideas as I spoke about The World: Media & Consumerism.