Back in April of 2011, a study called "The World Unplugged" asked 1,000 young adults to do one thing - one seemingly simple thing. They asked them to abstain from the internet (and all other forms of media) for an entire 24 hours. I'm sure you are all thinking "Sure, that would be a breeze." You know, read a book, go for a run - maybe even cook a nice meal. Hell, you could sleep for 8-10 hours of the time.
Wrong, according to the results. The study is over a year old but it sticks in my head due to the unbelievable responses it generated from its participants. When surveyed about their time "unplugged," people said some stuff that soars past melodramatic and occasionally runs up on insane.
"I felt paralyzed," said one person, "almost handicapped in my ability to live."
"Emptiness overwhelmed me," said another.
"I felt desperate and felt some kind of anguish."
Paralyzed? Anguished? Desperate? Those are the types of feeling that lead people to cry internet addiction. Maybe we would all be happier if there was no internet. Not as is taking it away, mind you - we see the results of that. I'm talking about a world where the internet simply never existed.
Can you image a world without the internet?
The folks over at OnlineEducation.net did. And what they found was a bleak, brutal landscape devoid of everything that we've come to know and love - Google, eBay, Facebook, online gaming. Not only that, but you have to think about it in terms of what you'd have to rely on without the web. $1,200 for a complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica? Please.
Check out the full infographic below: