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A Vivid Reminder From Banksy That Technology Can Enslave Us All

By Jamie Condliffe on at

Every morning you wake up, your hand scrambling for the smartphone on the bedside table. Is there an email, a tweet, a like on Instagram? You're a slave to the phone, desperate for its digital hit.

Everyone does it, so how wrong can it be? Honestly? Pretty wrong. Technology is surely wonderful: it can make our lives more efficient, allow unprecedented levels of communication, and expand our horizons.

But its draw can be too much. It can suck us in, take over our lives, turn us into simpering, whimpering, Facebook-loving wrecks. You don't need to check your email as soon as you wake up; you don't need to see if someone favourited your tweet as you go to bed. Of course you don't. But you do, you can't help it.

Banksy's not shy of bringing together technological and social commentary, and his latest effort — really just a simple sketch that he posted to Twitter — is a stark reminder that our technology is increasingly an extension of us. A reminder that, sometimes, we rely on it too much.

But it needn't be that way. To borrow Jesus Diaz's words:

Perhaps we should just try be a bit more sensible about it—as with any other addictive substance. I like a good whisky, but I don't have to drink three bottles of it every day. I can do the same with phones and tablets and computers: Play more Lego. Play more piano. Go outside. Don't use the phone at all while I'm with others. Read. Walk. Go to the movies. Create something with my own hands. Get real.

So here's to getting real. Thanks for the reminder, Banksy. [Banksy]