Ethics and Information Technology 9 (4):251-258 (2007)

The new information technologies hold out the promise of instantaneous, 24/7 connection and co-presence. But to be everywhere at once is to be effectively nowhere; to be connected to everyone and everything is to be effectively disconnected. Why then do we long for faster connections and fuller connectivity? The answer this paper proposes is that we are trying to fill our existential lack, our radical sense of inadequacy and incompleteness as human beings. From such a perspective, our pursuit of speed and connectivity is doomed to failure insofar as it only exacerbates the condition we are fleeing. Rather than rushing faster, the Buddhist-inspired solution would have us slow down and directly investigate our sense of lack.
Keywords attention span  Buddhism  clock time  cybertime  groundlessness  lack  paradox of choice
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Reprint years 2008
DOI 10.1007/s10676-007-9146-2
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