The Infinite Scroll And How Social Media Feeds Are Proving To Be Extremely Debilitating For The Average User

The infinite scroll is a term that’s gaining attention across the internet, as individuals attempt to both understand what it means and deal with the ramifications of a social media fueled life.

American author Nir Eyal published his book titled “Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Control Your Life” all the way back in 2019, a much simpler time than the one we’re going through nowadays. The book’s contents boil down to navigating oneself through each day without being given over to trivialities such as social media feeds and whatnot. Overall, while Indistractable is a rather well—rounded book that discusses more than just social media platforms in its contemplation of distractions, Eyal does seem to have a lot to speak about such online sites. He’s been particularly critical of the likes of Facebook and Instagram (so, more or less everything that Meta owns), stating that practices by these social media platforms resemble those of full-fledged casinos, as they attempt to rope more and more users into using their platform for longer and longer.
So, where does the infinite scroll fit in here? Well, the infinite scroll refers to the near-endless scrolling that social media platform users often find themselves committing to when going through their feeds. It’s the nonstop assault of content that one surrenders themselves to, even staying up late in order to do so. While it may be a very juvenile take to state that the younger generations are ruined due to social media, because all adults have these complaints about new things, it’s important to recognize when a leisure activity turns into something a bit worse and more debilitating.

Eyal’s best-selling book essentially created entire routines that individuals could adhere to in the interests of moderating their online life while also striking a balance between it and their day-to-day real life. While the book did very well in 2019, Eyal noticed there being a sudden and recognizable uptick in the number of books being sold in 2020, the year of the pandemic. With technology being our only resort for both work and play as everyone quarantined, users began to see the unhealthy effects of the infinite book, and sought to do better.

Generations have always had a bit of a problem with trying to fill out downtime with activities. With social media so easily accessible to us, we’ve gone ahead and made it our form of downtime, without realizing just how unhealthy the ramifications of doing so are. Nir Eyal’s Indistractable enables users to find activities and meaning outside of the social media world, and switch to something healthier instead.

Read next: Social Media Can Cause Depression in Adults, New Study Finds
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