Oxford University academic and professor of pharmacology Baroness Greenfield suggests that spending too much time on the internet checking email, Facebook, Twitter, RSS news feeds and all the rest is destroying our very sense of who we are.
She argues that our modern obsession with always-on connections, social networking and real-time news threatens our own understandings of our own minds and personalities.
Twitter and Facebook ‘identity crisis’
It is the banality of Twitter that Baroness Greenfield seems to be mostly concerned about, claiming that our focus on the instant and continuous feedback from our internet friends is rewiring humans’ brains in a fundamental way.
Baroness Greenfield said: ‘Why should someone be interested in what someone else had for breakfast? It reminds me of a small child (saying): “Look at me Mummy, I’m doing this, look at me Mummy, I’m doing that.
“It’s almost as if they’re in some kind of identity crisis. In a sense it’s keeping the brain in a sort of time warp.
“It’s almost as if people are living in a world that’s not a real world, but a world where what counts is what people think of you or (if they) can click on you. Think of the implications for society if people worry more about what other people think about them than what they think about themselves.”