An unso­cial me­dia? K PER­HAPS IT’S TIME FOR A DIG­I­TAL DETOX ...

Huddersfield Daily Examiner - - FRONT PAGE -

UBER is tri­alling self­driv­ing taxis in Amer­ica and a Bri­tish com­pany hopes to have them op­er­at­ing in Lon­don by 2019.

I’m all in favour as I am not the most so­cial of peo­ple when trav­el­ling.

On buses, trains or planes I pre­fer to immerse my­self in a news­pa­per, a book or my own thoughts rather than in­ter­act with a fel­low pas­sen­ger in dis­cus­sions about the weather, rea­sons for travel or, God for­bid, Brexit.

In taxis I inevitably em­bar­rass my­self by fall­ing into that Peter Kaye rou­tine of ask­ing the driver: “What time did you start?” fol­lowed by: “What time do you fin­ish?”

I do this in an at­tempt to show em­pa­thy, when the only em­pa­thy the driver wants is to be left alone to ne­go­ti­ate the traf­fic fol­lowed by a rea­son­able tip once we ar­rive at our des­ti­na­tion.

So climb­ing into a cab with­out a driver would be a boon – and save on the tip – and make the jour­ney stress free. But wait, there’s more. Uber also say they will be test­ing fly­ing taxis by 2020 and have them in ser­vice in Lon­don by 2028 which might con­ceiv­ably help avoid traf­fic con­ges­tion but add to skies al­ready busy with Ama­zon drones mak­ing same day de­liv­er­ies. In fact, if you EIRA Knight­ley tried Twit­ter for all of 12 hours be­fore kick­ing it into touch.

Megan Fox lasted five days be­fore leav­ing with the Tweet: “I have yet to dis­cover its pur­pose.”

Daniel Rad­cliffe prefers his pri­vacy and Jake Gyl­len­haal doesn’t ap­prove of so­cial me­dia and summed up the feel­ings of many when he said: “We’re all look­ing down. No-one’s look­ing up.”

Now it seems as if a grow­ing num­ber of young and in­formed peo­ple are adopt­ing the same at­ti­tudes.

A study by Dig­i­tal Aware­ness UK and the Head­mas­ters’ and Head­mistresses’ Con­fer­ence, found 63% of stu­dents said they would not care if so­cial me­dia did not ex­ist and 71% said they had taken a break from it.

They joined celebri­ties such as Kanye West, Justin Bieber, Lind­say Lo­han and Mi­ley Cyrus in tak­ing a dig­i­tal detox.

Ed Sheeran took ex­tended leave of ab­sence so he could “stop see­ing the world through a screen.”

So­cial me­dia has its devo­tees but could that partly be be­cause it’s ad­dic­tive by na­ture.

Sean Parker, for­mer Pres­i­dent of Face­book, says the site was de­signed to keep peo­ple hooked in a “so­cial val­i­da­tion feed­back loop” and the same phi­los­o­phy has been built into other so­cial me­dia out­lets.

It can be time con­sum­ing to an avid user and pro­duce feel­ings of guilt, jeal­ousy and de­pres­sion, par­tic­u­larly among the young. or­der your drone from Ama­zon it won’t be long be­fore it will be able to de­liver it­self.

Fly­ing taxis with ver­ti­cal take-off are be­ing de­vel­oped by techno firms around the world and will pre­sum­ably op­er­ate on Sat­Nav and post­code, un­less you are in the Ir­ish Repub­lic where they don’t have post­codes.

There the Sat Nav in­struc­tion might in­clude in­ter­est­ing di­ver­sions such as: “Land at Ryan’s Store and Bar and ask for fi­nal di­rec­tions. Spe­cial of­fer this week on peat and their draught Guin­ness is not to be missed.”

Now that’s my sort of taxi.

These days, I Face­book rarely, although I feel guilty if I don’t log on at least once a day to see what

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