Tech Addict Asks: “Should I Send an Email or Change My Son’s Diapers?”

Posted on June 19, 2008
Filed Under Web 2.0 Kool Aid |

I’ve picked on Robert Scoble quite a bit because I think he embodies all that is wrong with Web 2.0. Not only does he epitomize the “technology for technology’s sake” philosophy so prevalent in Web 2.0, he’s simply out of touch with reality as a whole.

Up until now, this has been good for some amusement.

But through a trackback from the MarCom Writer Blog, I stumbled upon a Scoble post that contained something really disturbing.

In response to an email asking him why he wastes so much time with Web 2.0 services and technology gadets, Scoble wrote:

Lately I’ve been asking myself a lot of similar questions that Bob has been asking me.

“Is it better to just take the night off and watch some TV instead of trying out that new Windows Mobile Smart Phone that arrived?”

“Is it better to change Milan’s diapers or answer another email?”

“Is it better to go have a nice glass of wine down at the Ritz or open up Twitter to see if it’s up again?”

“Should I start reviewing some Facebook applications or should I go for a walk?”

Note the bolded question, “Is it better to change Milan’s diapers or answer another email?”

Scoble has to ask himself whether he should let his child fester in shit or respond to another email?

I could probably write an extensive rant about this but it’s not worth it because it doesn’t take an incredibly perceptive person to figure out that any individual who has to ask himself whether caring for his child should come before his email has more than a productivity problem - he has a serious prioritization problem and an addiction.

The saddest thing about Scoble’s post is not that he would actually post something so utterly despicable without apparently realizing how horrible it makes him look as a parent. It’s that of the more that 100 commenters who participated in the “conversation,” only Dianna Huff of the MarCom Writer Blog called him on this question and only one pointed out that Scoble’s perspective is indicative more of “obsession” than anything else.

I can’t help but wonder what type of futures children raised by technology addicts face. Are they really any better than the futures of children whose parents are addicted to something else?

I simply pray that the majority of these “first adopters” are too busy wasting time on the Internet to have sex so that we don’t have to find out.

In that sense, if Twitter et. al. can serve as a form of indirect contraception, Web 2.0 may be more important to humanity than I ever believed possible.

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6 Responses to “Tech Addict Asks: “Should I Send an Email or Change My Son’s Diapers?””

  1. Dianna Huff on June 19th, 2008 9:55 am

    Thanks for the plug. I love your blog, by the way.

    This whole Twitter/Facebook debate really bugs the hell out of me. When I read posts about how people find these things so wonderful for their businesses, I think, “Am I missing something here?”

    But then I’ll have a conversation with someone offline and will hear stories about people staying up until 2:00 or 3:00 AM in order to get their work done because these “tools” are such HUGE time sucks.

    Quite frankly, I like to be asleep at 2:00 AM, not working.

    Keep up the good work.

  2. Bob Bly on June 19th, 2008 10:40 am

    What a great post, right on the money and hilarious to boot! My opinion of Web 2.0 and tech gadgets is virtually identical to yours.

  3. CT Moore on June 19th, 2008 11:12 am

    [insert sycophantic praise here]

    If Web 2.0 is so social, then why are people forgetting how to connect in person and feeling more and more alienated?

    It f**king pigeonholes your social skills, making it impossible to relate to people with dissimilar interested.

  4. Tom on June 20th, 2008 12:24 am

    I just read a post from Fred Wilson that makes me wonder if he is not beginning to feel a little worn down by Web 2.0.

    His interest in purely tech conversations appears to be waning. He thinks many of the “professional” blogs are becoming “news organizations optimizing around scoops and driving readership”.

    But he is not sure where to go to “read the thoughts of people who blog because they want”, not because it’s a job.

    He summarizes thusly: “I want a place I can go every day and get inspired by real people. It hasn’t happened for me in many years in traditional media and honestly it’s happening for me less and less these day in online/social media.”

    (Hopefully he won’t bill me for quoting more than 5 words from his post.)

  5. Sam B on June 20th, 2008 4:46 am

    The cheap - but more charitable - interpretation is that he spends all day hanging out with people who think venture funding is an indicator of business success, and thus doesn’t see festering in s— as a problem.

    It is probably still better to be a Twitterbaby than a crackbaby, but hey, if the eVangelists are to be believed, Web 2.0 is in it’s early days. New vision statement: “Friendfeed - Bigger Than Jesus, Worse Than Meth.”

    Incidentally, I feel like asking Fred Wilson, who wonders “where he can get inspired by real people”, whether he’s tried going to the pub. But this is the man who thinks that everyone should voluntarily open up their entire lives to the entire leering, perving world, so it would probably fall on deaf ears, and perhaps he’s just not good company.

  6. Scoble: The Idiots vs. the Non-Idiots : The Drama 2.0 Show on August 27th, 2008 9:42 am

    […] technology’s sake. That’s fine, although I think his passion has crossed the line into unhealthy obsession. But he should not mistake others’ lack of passion for standalone technology for lack of […]

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