Video: Is Silicon Valley turning us into smartphone junkies?

Video: “60 Minutes” report on smartphone addiction and brain hacking
(Mobile users: alternate site for video)

Social media, apps and smartphones have revolutionized the world. But what exactly are they doing to our brains?

A recent “60 Minutes” report looks into Silicon Valley’s role in brain hacking, the practice of understanding how we respond to stimuli so programmers can make their software more compelling. While developers are becoming better at creating addictive apps, the actual effects remain unknown.

As shown in the video, we’re all guinea pigs. (The segment’s transcript is on CBS’ site.)

Marketers may want to ask the right questions about our role in using social channels and content to sell widgets:

  • Are we marketing to a bunch of smartphone junkies?
  • Do these apps heighten anxiety among users, especially when putting down their devices?
  • What are the effects on developing brains, such as in teenagers?
  • What should we follow as ethical guidelines when using these apps and channels for marketing?
  • Can we also use Anderson Cooper for scientific testing?
  • Do these apps make our lives better or serve primarily the app designers?

Watch the video, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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About Wade Kwon

Wade Kwon is conference director for Y'all Connect. See his full bio.

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