We are a group of teenagers determined to change our relationship with tech in a way that enhances – instead of controlling – our life. As part of GEN-Z, the first generation raised by social media, we realise that we, as most of you, spend at least 1/3 of our lives online. To make it even scarier: the average person looks at their phone 200 times per day, that’s every 6 minutes! We live in a constant distraction mode, spending our time hooked to the screen and leaving behind what really matters.
The reason behind this global tech addiction? The way the tech industry works. Due to the current advertising model, more of our time & attention = more money. Behind every screen, there are 100s of engineers working daily to understand our psychology and create addictive products that constantly release dopamine in our brain to grab as much of our time & attention as possible.
Design ethicists are addressing the issue from above, applying political pressure and talking to tech giants so that the rules of the game change towards humane business models that are not based on monetizing our attention, but on creating quality experiences. However, while things get sorted in the professional world, we have decided to take the matter in hand and redefine our own future.
We are learning to regain control of our life by using tech as a liberating tool and defending ourselves from manipulation. And we are firm on making our generation follow.
With the help of ‘Um So Tecto’, an association that tackles social issues and raises awareness through educational plays and documentaries, we are creating an educational programme that promotes consumer awareness and a digitally conscious life, educating teens like us around schools from all socioeconomic backgrounds on the importance of choosing consciously when to use social media, instead of being dragged to it in an automatic-pilot mode. We are also producing a documentary that will document our projects and learning experience so that we can reach more people.