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07/26/2011

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Chase Harrington

I agree completely with Johann Hari on the reading with distractions. I have tried reading with distractions, its very hard to do and im becoming more and more interested in reading. Its almost like typing a text when you are talking to somebody you end up typing what your saying to the person directly across from you. My theory is words and words do not mach but numbers and words can, try doing your english homework with your music going and then your math you will see music and math is much easier. Sooner or later libraries wont exist and everything will be on laptops and kindles and there will constantly be a noise running in the background while your trying to read. My suggestion get the noise reduction headphones.

Joan Jarrett

Interesting comment, Chase. It looks like you may be working on a good argument for a paper...

Joan Jarrett

I wonder if your peers agree or disagree with you.

Haley Gordon

Chase, I agree that it can be hard to concentrate when there are a lot of distractions. I am lucky, though, because I can read in the middle of a busy room. But, I am also one of eleven children at home, so maybe my brain was trained from an early age to concentrate in the middle of noise. I agree with you that libraries and book stores may not be as available soon. My dad already complains that there aren't book stores in the mall anymore. I told him that he needs to get a Kindle, but he said that he likes the feel of the books in his hand. I can read a book whether it is on a computer screen or in hardcover, but I prefer to read an old-fashioned book.

A. Youngberg

I really enjoyed reading this article because books someday becoming extinct is a common dinner table topic we discuss at my house. I think that one day books will become extinct because everything will eventually be available electronically. Yes, there are those people that love the feeling of books between their hands but if books become harder and harder to get in the future, those people will eventually give into technology not because they want to but because they have to. Our generation is defined by technology. It has become harder and harder for a lot of young people to want to read just for fun. This summer, I thought about all the drama and complaining people do on Facebook and I got really angry so I deactivated mine. I then thought about things I would like to do this summer. I decided that I wanted to read a book because the last time I read a book just because I want to was before I started high school five years ago. It's sad but the reality is that our generation is more interested in what people say on Facebook than sitting in a quiet place and reading a good book.

Joan Jarrett

Very interesting. Does all the technology serve to bring us closer together or does it isolate us?

Annie

In the article by Johann Hari, he talks about how in today’s society, we are constantly being distracted by technology. Because of this, it is hard to sit down and read a book. With things such as kindles and iPhones, it is hard to fully immerse yourself into a book without getting distracted to things like Pinterest, the internet, and Facebook. Because of this, it is important that we learn to balance our time spent reading and our time spent on technology. By learning to balance reading and technology, our generation will be able to take the time to read a book, while still having time for leisure time online.
Overall I agree with the article by Johann Haris. I believe that in today’s society we are focused more on technology and entertainment rather than taking the time to sit down and read a book. I do believe that reading is very important, and given the time to do so, very enjoyable. Yes, I do also enjoy going onto Pinterest and finding crafts to do, but I also have to balance my intake of technology with my time to read. Reading is very important when it comes to learning. When you read, you need to be fully concentrated on what is going on within the book. This requires you to interact and use brain power in order to learn from what you are reading. This is why reading is so important and why you should make time in your day-to-day life for reading. So whether it is a paper book or a kindle, we need to see the importance of reading books and how we can balance reading with our love of technology.

Elba Gonzalez

I also agree with Johhan Hari about the issue of being easily distracted. I agree because, today technology has become very advanced. Furthermore, it is easy to get distracted because the technological development of computers, television, cellular phones, internet and transport system has made life easier and simpler and also time saving. However, I also believe that technology is disrupting our ability to concentrate. In the article “Johann Hari: How to survive the age of distraction” claims that today we are living in the world of too many things going on and keeping us distracted. Also, Hari claims that today more than ever people should rely on books and see the benefits that books has for us. I totally agree with Hari, reading a book does have its benefits such as having a pace, not being distracted by anything else like links that pop up, messages erupting and others. I have read amazing books and I have to admit that I enjoyed them. In addition, books are simple to read and less distracting. Also, when I read a book, other things around me do not matter much because I am not connected to my phone or internet, it is just me and a book. However, I dislike the fact that books require dead tree but if people preserve them appropriately they will last forever. Regarding what Hari said about mostly everyone desires to be in a deep concentration, well I think that Hari is overstating. In other words, relating deep concentrating to mostly every human is too exaggerating for me. I believe that there are people who enjoy having peace and concentrating in their life but in the world I live in, I find it easier to believe that most people are driven by technology. I agree with Hari in the fact that reading a book will have a better chance in providing concentration and fewer distractions.

Tony Chavez

In Johann Hari’s article, “How to Survive Age of Distraction”, he points out how people today are so focused on technology, that they block themselves out from their surroundings. I agree because it is very true that people get distracted over the smallest things, when surrounded by an electronic device. Technology plays a huge role in society because we live in a world where a small device, such as a smart phone can do just about everything. Phones today keep us in touch with friends and family through social networks, and most of our shopping can be done on them as well which saves us time and even money. The problem with that is that it targets many young adults such as college students and makes it difficult to concentrate as well. When studying for a test or reading a book, with the first beep off a phone, it is a natural reaction to pick up the phone and see what is going on out in world. Before technology was invented, people seemed to be more focus on reading, writing, and even physical activities, which are all beneficial to us. When technology became a bigger part in our lives all that seemed to disappear. In the 90’s and even early 2000’s it was not difficult for children to go outside and make friends and play a game of catch. Today, most children stay indoors-playing video games and make friends over social networks without making any connections in person with the outside world. People seem to have lost their lives in the sense that they are unaware of what is important and making that connection with their education or family because technology seems to consume every minute of our lives. Even though it is difficult to avoid technology, sometimes it would help to leave out all distractions and live a life different than the majority of society and do everything they way it use to be.

Emmi A-R

In Johann Hari's article, he discusses the art of the book and how in these modern times, the desire and in some cases the ability to put a book in your hand and read is dwindling. He points out that in some cases, reading a book with your laptop on in the background is like trying to read a book at a party. Hari states that we are surrounded by "Weapons of Mass Distraction" that make it very difficult for us to sit down and actually soak in the content and the material that we are reading. He also made a connection to the word "wired" and how it can have two meanings, which in this scenario they connect perfectly to the article.
I completely agree with what Hari is saying about how the distractions that constantly surround us change many things in our world, a big one being our ability or desire to sit down and read because my personal experience confirms it. In fifth grade back before there was a cell phone in my pocket and a laptop in my backpack, I would always have at least two books in my hand, usually more. Now obviously several parts of my life have changed since fifth grade, but one huge one is my access and use of technology. Technology has absolutely contributed to my short attention span and my constant need to check my phone just to stay in the loop. There is a constant need engrained in me to "stay connected" because of the "Weapons of Mass Distraction" in my life. The saddest thing is the last time that I completely read and finished a book was in fifth grade.

Kenshara Mayo

In Johann Hari's article, "How to Survive Age of Distraction" he explains why he believes that technology has somewhat stifled our ability to sit down and read a paperback book. I agree with his argument that "it's almost physically harder to read a book." Our minds aren't focused on the book when we read one because of "the encroachment of the buzz, the sense that there's something out there that merits [your] attention." When you read an e-book, you don't get the same experience as reading a paperback book because you have constant distractions on your phone. I agree with his statement "sugar, alcohol, and the web are amazing pleasures and joys, but we need to know how to handle them without letting them addle us." He describes the sugar and alcohol experience with the Inuits of the Arctic to inform the public that we need to "limit our exposure to the web." We don't fully understand a book if we constantly have the reminder that the internet is waiting for us, but if we balance both acts, we can experience both equally.

Nazli Islam

I agree with the view presented in this article that books are still essential in today's society. Many people may feel that with the modern technologies, reading books is obsolete. However, I feel that because of all the new technology, we need reading more than ever. Reading books creates deeper thinking than doing something superficial on the web. Reading e-books also does not have the same effect as reading a book because as it was pointed out, e-books are no longer just books, but a new way of accessing the web. If we as a society lose reading, we would also lose something fundamental that has been with us since the beginning of civilization, with creation of cuneiform by the ancient Sumerians. One thing that I cannot relate to in this article is not being able to read in the face of today's technology. Personally, I never feel overwhelmed by technology, and when I'm reading it is a unique experience that is uninterrupted by the need to "check Twitter". Otherwise, I fully agree with the article that reading is still important and should be used in balance with the internet and modern technology.

Kaley Settle

Although our current society seems to have lost books amidst the wave of technology, Johann Hari's article "How to Survive Age of Distraction" presents a very thought provoking idea concerning our current relationship with books. I support his view that we still need physical books in our world. Technology proves to be a constant distraction where users alternate between social media sites. Even reading on a phone or kindle gives the user quick access to social media and other apps. Physical books give us a chance to back away from the busy world and just follow the narrative. Books work on a much deeper level than social media websites, and it is important that humans, aside from the artificial world, experience the meaningful concepts books offer. Going back to the basics is not a bad thing at all, if anything humans need a break from technology to experience books the way people so long ago did. In a world that anticipates the release of a new iPhone every two years, it is good knowing books and stories will remain unchanged waiting for a new generation to discover them.

Elena McNiece

Johann Hari's article presents a very valid concern. With all these new technologies, some things (like books) are left unused. I do agree with Hari in his belief that books are vital to humanity. They provide information and lessons in a simplistic form. These books are now being read primarily on electronic devices which do communicate the same information, but not as efficiently. I believe this factor is overlooked among society. Hari's perspective on the fate of books is very optimistic. It is far more likely that people will overlook the value of physical books and fairly quickly, books will be completely traded for electronic articles. electronic information takes up less space and is healthier for the environment. The new form of books offers bits of information in small chunks. This appeals to the new ADHD-ruled society that can only focus in short periods of time. Maybe this attention-deficit is caused by the lack of reading physical books. Ray Bradbury said "You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them." It's an disastrous cycle that can only be solved with physical books.

olyvia hulser

This article is about how the entertainment medium of literature is slowly dying. The author describes declined popularity of books, and what effect technology had on this decline. One of the main points brought up by the author is that reading is necessary for people because many people wish to engage in deep thought. Books make people think, in contrast to the mindless entertainment provided by smart phones. I agree with this claim and i believe that reading provides a type of entertainment that makes you think, which is very important. It is very unfortunate that the popularity of reading is declining because it can cause a person to think in ways that no other form of entertainment can. The author says "Most humans don't just want mental snacks forever; they also want meals". By saying this, the author describes books as a truly unique art form, which the feeling of cannot be replicated by anything else.

Hailey D Wallace

I believe that Hari's faith in printed books is reasonable because to me printed books just mean more than an online copy of the book. I agree that printed books are important enough to survive the rapid changes that society is navigating today, it's just so much better to physically hold the book in your hand and to be able to turn the pages as you read. As Hari states in his article "ask me to throw away a book, and i begin shaking like Meryle Streep in Sophie's Choice adn insist that I just couldn't bear to part company with it, no matter how unlikely it is I will ever read. . ." I'm the same way, when I decide I need to try to get rid of some of my books I just never want to get rid of the ones that I think I may read someday even though I've had them for months and haven't read them yet. Physical books are important in our lives it just depends on the person you ask if they see it that way or not. For example, when your reading a textbook for class and you want to be able to highlight and underline in the book yes, you are able to do it in both the online version and physical copy but if it was me I would better learn from a physical copy that I would be able to flip back and forth from page to page while others say they learn better if the book was an online version.

Emma Smith

Yes, I believe Hari's faith in printed books is reasonable because it definitely means so much more to hold a book rather than reading something off the screen. I agree that printed books are important enough to survive the rapid changes we're navigating. "Because most humans have a desire to engage in deep thought and deep concentration." That’s exactly what you get when you read a book, and not only do you have deep thought and concentration, but it lets your mind escape into the book. It's important to be able to physically hold the book with no distractions such as ads, multiple links, and others. "And here's the function that the book - the paper book that doesn't beep or flash or link or let you watch a thousand videos all at once – does for you that nothing else will. It gives you the capacity for deep, linear concentration." This is very true, and with rising technological advances, it's getting even harder to be able to sit down with a book and really focus. Another point I want to bring up is regarding school and work done in books. I believe it books are important in this regard because it is just so much simpler to read from a textbook and do work from there, because you are able to annotate, even just flipping the pages gives a real sense of learning in a way instead of scrolling on the computer.

Savannah Harris

I agree with Hari's perspective on printed books. Printed books will allow the world to survive with the rapid changes ahead of us. Being able to hold a book in your hands is the best feeling ever created. Printed books allow you to have a deeper connection with the story and the author. These books will help the world survive because one day when technology has left the world the printed books will still be here and full of knowledge to share.

Avis V Hackett-Fortune


Hari’s claim is of value and fact. The value that reading of books is becoming less and less a priority of our lives, but books are necessary for our lives to exist. The fact is that you must know how to read to survive if it is only basic knowledge of words.
Hari also states, “In the age of the internet, physical paper books are a technology we need more, not less “(Johann Hari, 7) and "reading is an act of resistance in a landscape of distraction.... It requires us to pace ourselves. It returns us to a reckoning with time (Johann Hari, 9). Reading is fundamental, don’t you agree? Why or why not?

Abby Gooch

I completely agree with Hari’s perspective on paper books. I think paper books keep us grounded in a world that’s constantly attempting to drown us in technology. I think having actual text in your hands allows you to feel much more connected with the real world. There’s so much value in paper books, and I feel like it’s unappreciated by generations. In all of the dystopian stories I’ve read, books are viewed as contraband, which I think speaks very loudly. Paper books help people with concentration, freedom of mind, and even expression. Dystopian societies ban them for this reason, which shows exactly why they are so important in a free, expressive societies.

Jayna B

I would say no, most humans do not have a lot of desire to engage in deep thought and concentration. I believe this because it can be very difficult to engage in deep thought and concentration. Having deep thought requires a person to have the ability to analyze and think into something farther than just what is on the surface level. Most would rather just think about a topic for a moment and then move on with their day. People find it more appealing to take the easy way out than to try and engage in something difficult like deep thought. For instance, Hari mentions how the rise of the internet has caused us to move away from real books. A book requires us to concentrate and have our full attention on the text. Most people cannot do this anymore because the internet can entertain our brains with such ease. It does this by allowing us the ability to mindlessly scroll through things like Twitter and Instagram with little thought.

Lauren Rahn

I believe that Hari's view on paper books is completely valid and reasonable. Paper books can be looked as a source of history, and can hold things technology cannot. I also believe that paper books are a way for humans who are not into technology to still stay up to date. As the world is changing each day, the use of hard-copy and paper books has the power to keep society grounded if remembered. Where it becomes difficult is when students and children today despise and look at books as a chore rather than an enjoyable activity. In conclusion, I believe that paper books are important in distinguishing the reality between real and virtual, and should certainly be more appreciated than they are now.

Aariana Hudson

I agree with Hari's view on paper books. Although to some people they may seem outdated or old fashioned, paper books forces the reader to focus their full attention on what they are reading. If a person were to read on a cell phone or on any sort of mobile device, they are usually subjected to pop up notifications for texts or mobile games. These things are distractions that pull readers from the stories they should be focused on. Despite the fact that there are benefits to reading on a device that can fit in a purse or pocket, reading a paper book keeps its reader focused and in tuned with the story being presented is the best way to ensure knowledge to the reader.

Emily Burgess

When you pick up a book and begin reading, your mind leaves your current surroundings and enters the setting of the book. You get lost into another world that grabs all of your attention and won't let it go until you finish. Only an actual book in hand can produce this temptation from not being able to put that book down. When reading on an electronic device you can't get the whole experience. You can't feel or smell the dull odor from the pages. You get distracted by notifications or the screen going dark or the device dying and so much more. Overall a device cannot produce the deep concentration that is required for truly getting a feel for the book.

Shelby Basye

Do you think that with these rapid changes our world is experiencing in the twenty-first century, that a printed book will survive? I see both sides to this argument. I believe there is a comfort that some experience when holding an actual book in their hands. While younger people in today’s society are all about the internet and the fancy advances we are making. With the advancement in modern times, a paper book is being wiped out by the e-book.
Hari argues, “ the mental space it (a paper book) occupied is being eroded by the thousand Weapons of Mass Distraction that surround us all.” Another mention would be that although it may be hard to admit, we all sense that “it is becoming almost physically harder to read books” (Hari). I myself can speak to the part of a “feeling” where it becomes hard to want to read a book. Over the summer I read about 5 books and that’s the most books I've read since middle school. You may ask why did I decide to read books then, my answer is because I was tired of staring at a phone screen. There comes a point in time where even looking at your phone becomes boring and I had reached that point. So I decided to read to escape the reality of what our society has become today. I can’t say I agree more with the statement made by Johann Hari in How to survive the age of distraction, “ In the age of the internet, physical paper books are a technology we need more, not less.”
As David Ulin puts it: "Reading is an act of resistance in a landscape of distraction.... It requires us to pace ourselves. It returns us to a reckoning with time. In the midst of a book, we have no choice but to be patient, to take each thing in its moment, to let the narrative prevail. We regain the world by withdrawing from it just a little, by stepping back from the noise." Books have different meanings than tv shows or apps on electronics. As humans we have a desire to engage in deep thought and deep concentration. That is why we need books, and why I hope they will survive.

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