Why Clay Shirky Banned Laptops, Tablets and Phones from His Classroom | Mediashift | PBS Reply

Pleasure-from-Multitasking-but-Lower-Performance-SSOver the years, I’ve noticed that when I do have a specific reason to ask everyone to set aside their devices “lids down,” in the parlance of my department, it’s as if someone has let fresh air into the room. The conversation brightens, and more recently, there is a sense of relief from many of the students. Multi-tasking is cognitively exhausting — when we do it by choice, being asked to stop can come as a welcome change.

So this year, I moved from recommending setting aside laptops and phones to requiring it, adding this to the class rules: “Stay focused. No devices in class, unless the assignment requires it.” Here’s why I finally switched from “allowed unless by request” to “banned unless required.”

I made the same decisions years ago.  I agree with Clay’s views about multi-tasking, and would add to that list: 1) digital literacy, and 2) maturity.  Too many students simply do not know how to shut off and focus.  Additionally, a portion of those who do not know how to power off are simply not mature enough to independently make the right decision.  So, I banned all laptops and devices unless I requested the students to power on.

via Why Clay Shirky Banned Laptops, Tablets and Phones from His Classroom | Mediashift | PBS.

This Week in Asia: The Price of a Poor Reputation Reply

This week in Asia….I share two stories about corporate reputation in Asia. The first is a news report citing extraordinary figures from China about the economic costs of a poor corporate reputation.  And then I try to offer some useful advice by sharing a S+B article on doing business in markets with weak governance.

As always, do check out of the full menu of podcasts available over at the For Immediate Release Podcast Network.

Meaning Is Healthier Than Happiness – The Atlantic Reply

people who are happy but have little to no sense of meaning in their lives — proverbially, simply here for the party — have the same gene expression patterns as people who are responding to and enduring chronic adversity. That is, the bodies of these happy people are preparing them for bacterial threats by activating the pro-inflammatory response. Chronic inflammation is, of course, associated with major illnesses like heart disease and various cancers.

“Empty positive emotions” — like the kind people experience during manic episodes or artificially induced euphoria from alcohol and drugs — ”are about as good for you for as adversity,” says Fredrickson.

It’s important to understand that for many people, a sense of meaning and happiness in life overlap; many people score jointly high or jointly low on the happiness and meaning measures in the study. But for many others, there is a dissonance — they feel that they are low on happiness and high on meaning or that their lives are very high in happiness, but low in meaning. This last group, which has the gene expression pattern associated with adversity, formed a whopping 75 percent of study participants. Only one quarter of the study participants had what the researchers call “eudaimonic predominance” — that is, their sense of meaning outpaced their feelings of happiness.

via Meaning Is Healthier Than Happiness – The Atlantic.

America’s public trust has dwindled with rise in income inequality Reply

Trust in others and confidence in societal institutions are at their lowest point in over three decades, analyses of national survey data reveal. The findings are forthcoming in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

“Compared to Americans in the 1970s-2000s, Americans in the last few years are less likely to say they can trust others, and are less likely to believe that institutions such as government, the press, religious organizations, schools, and large corporations are ‘doing a good job,'” explains psychological scientist and lead researcher Jean M. Twenge of San Diego State University.

Twenge and colleagues W. Keith Campbell and Nathan Carter, both of the University of Georgia, found that as income inequality and poverty rose, public trust declined, indicating that socioeconomic factors may play an important role in driving this downward trend in public trust:”With the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, people trust each other less,” says Twenge.

“There’s a growing perception that other people are cheating or taking advantage to get ahead, as evidenced, for example, by the ideas around ‘the 1%’ in the Occupy protests.”

via Public trust has dwindled with rise in income inequality.