Smartphones and Messaging - Deepstash

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The Psychology Behind Why We Can't Stop Messaging

Smartphones and Messaging

Smartphones and Messaging

Phones became smart more than a decade ago and started doing almost everything.

While the app store has millions of apps to take care of our needs, connecting with other people remains one of the few fundamental uses of the phone.

Actual phone call usage has gone down drastically, while services like text messages, video calls, email, and rich messages (Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp) are used almost throughout the day.

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TikTok

TikTok is reportedly 500 million users strong. It’s been a while since a new social app got big enough to make nonusers feel they’re missing out from an experience.

TikTok is an app for making and sharing short videos. For the Americans, it is one of the most popular of many short-video-sharing apps in that country. The videos are tall, and you navigate through videos by scrolling up and down, like a feed. You can follow and be followed. You can use it like any other social app.

TikTok "tools"
Video creators have all sorts of tools available.
  • Filters as on Snapchat.
  • The ability to search for sounds to score your video.
  • It provides extensive reasons and prompts.
  • Hashtags play a large role as a functional organizing principle. 
  • It nudges you and makes it easy to come up with material to post.
  • Users are encouraged to engage with other users in two ways: Through "response" videos and through "duets" where a user replicates a video and add themselves alongside.
Fundamentally different

TikTok has stepped over the point between the familiar self-directed feed and experience based on algorithmic observation and inference. When you open the app, you don't see a feed of your friends, but a page called "For You" - It's an algorithmic feed based on videos you've interacted with or just watched.

It's not full of people you know or things you've explicitly told it you want to see. It is constantly learning from you and builds up a model of what you tend to watchIn short, it is like an Instagram centered entirely around its "Explore" tab.

Hooked To Technology
Hooked To Technology
  • Most of us check email too often, almost like a compulsive disorder. Just like any habit, there are internal cues, triggers and impulses that make us behave in a certain way with no conscious thought.
  • We are using technology as a suppressant to our inner restlessness.
  • Any uncertainty, uncomfortable emotion or situation can act as internal triggers, pushing us towards the bouquet of digital distractions.

A simple acknowledgement of the trigger sensation in our minds can be the first step to be aware and in control of the internal triggers.

Bury The Triggers That Hijack Your Attention

Put your mind at ease by burying all the triggers that hijack your attention and keep you away from concentrating on your work.

  1. The first thing is to turn off all the external triggers like your phone notifications, chimes, reminders or icons that rob us of our attention. For persistent apps, you can hide the icon in some folder.
  2. Use online tools like vacation responders and email filters.
  3. Use online calendars that let people schedule time for a meeting.