Ditch the GPS. It’s ruining your brain.

Saturated with devices, children today might grow up to see navigation from memory or a paper map as anachronistic as rote memorization or typewriting. But for them especially, independent navigation and the freedom to explore are vital to acquiring spatial knowledge that may improve hippocampal function. Turning off the GPS and teaching them navigational skills could have enormous cognitive benefits later in life… I’ve spoken with master navigators from different cultures who showed me that practicing navigation is a powerful form of engagement with the environment that can inspire a greater sense of stewardship.

Washington Post

How Slack Harms Projects

The net impact of this is that it creates unhealthy psychological stress. Every worker who might receive a message must ensure that they are watching their messaging application continually, even when at lunch, or away with the family. Every issue or question, no matter how trivial, is effectively as critical as a house on fire. Not being responsive can be disastrous for one’s career, and so being responsive on Slack is more essential to your career than meeting deadlines, delivering quality work, or generating revenue for the company.

Silas Reinagel

Why Aren’t We Talking About LinkedIn?

As Facebook and Twitter face scrutiny, the site for job seekers remains a controversy-free zone. Is the office the future of social media?

Any debate about “free speech” on LinkedIn has to square with the fact that it’s a place where you have to pay to message people with whom you aren’t already connected. If Facebook or Instagram sent a notification every time you looked at another’s user’s profile, it would be a scandal; on LinkedIn, it’s a core feature of the platform. On other social media platforms, users might be careful in case employers see evidence of their lives outside of work. The identities performed on LinkedIn are contrived with employers in mind.

New York Times

Madonna: Instagram designed to make people feel bad

“Will that make me more popular, or more successful? People are a slave to winning other’s approvals. I refuse to bend a knee to convention and what society expects of me as a woman.” Madonna, 60, added: “I think Instagram is made to make you feel bad.”… “I was lucky enough to have a life as an artist before the phone and Instagram and social media because I did have that time to develop as an artist and a human without feeling the pressure of judgment of other people or comparing myself to other people.”

The Guardian

5-star phonies: Inside the fake Amazon review complex

I spent two weeks in the underbelly of Amazon’s fake review economy — and emerged questioning our collective trust in the stars.

One day in 2015, a bodybuilding enthusiast named Tommy Noonan was perusing testosterone boosters on Amazon and noticed something strange.

“This product had 580 reviews and every single one was 5-stars,” he recalls. “People would write things like, ‘I haven’t tried this product…BUT,’ then leave a glowing review.”…

…In a spot check run prior to the publishing of this article, I confirmed Noonan’s findings: 10 of the 22 first-page results on Amazon for “iPhone charger” were products with thousands of 5-star reviews, all unverified and posted within a few days of each other.

The Hustle

Facebook are ‘morally bankrupt liars’ says New Zealand’s privacy commissioner

“Facebook cannot be trusted,” wrote John Edwards.

“They are morally bankrupt pathological liars who enable genocide (Myanmar), facilitate foreign undermining of democratic institutions.

“[They] allow the live streaming of suicides, rapes, and murders, continue to host and publish the mosque attack video, allow advertisers to target ‘Jew haters’ and other hateful market segments, and refuse to accept any responsibility for any content or harm.

The Guardian

Poll: Americans give social media a clear thumbs-down

According to the poll, 57 percent of Americans say they agree with the statement that social media sites like Facebook and Twitter do more to divide the country, while 35 percent think they do more to bring the nation together.

Fifty-five percent believe social media does more to spread lies and falsehoods, versus 31 percent who say it does more to spread news and information.

NBC News

The Bleak Reality of the Instagram Experience

Photography has long played a crucial role in how we shape the narrative of our lives. Milestones are documented, creating an archive that can be looked back on for years to come. But the value of facilitated photographs—whether a carnival’s fake backdrop of Niagara Falls or giant stilettos at the Happy Place—are a bit more difficult to parse. The photos are blatantly staged and not attached to important life events. Rather, they’re about creating evidence of having participated in a grandiose hypervisual event that mirrors that one-upmanship of social media.

But there is still a difference between old carnivals and the current crop of pop-up experiences. Carnivals and fairs always featured a range of activities for their guests—there were games, rides, prizes, and wonders of all kinds. Photos were a treat, a way to remember a well-rounded day. Guests at pop-up experiences appear to be there for one reason only: to document themselves in a place that has been carefully designed to give every attendee the exact same photos and, by extension, the same memories.

The Walrus

Despite social media, Generation Z, Millennials report feeling lonely

“Younger people are genuinely surprised to ever feel lonely and are really overwhelmed by it,” said Dawn Fallik, an associate professor at the University of Delaware in Newark who’s working on a book about loneliness.

She, along with Julianne Holt-Lunstad, of Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, was scheduled to speak at SXSW Friday at two sessions called “Generation Lonely: 10,000 Followers and No Friends.” The close look at loneliness among these techno-connected young people drew so many registrants, SXSW this week added a repeat session at the end of the day.

“They’ve been surrounded by conversation their whole lives, so when that silence happens, they have a hard time just being in it and they take it that there’s something wrong,” Fallik said.

NBC News