A Wired News columnist working on his next installment has triggered an online discussion about how "information addiction"--a condition that make us more likely to surf the Net than curl up in front of the tube--is affecting our romantic relationships.
Nick Currie, aka "Momus," recognized that in his own relationships, much of the together time involves sitting in front of separate laptops, having separate experiences. Curious if this behavior is taking a toll, he put out an online call for stories about "information couples." Among other questions, he asked whether couples are socializing while simultaneously surfing and whether the less-addicted couple feels like an information widow or widower.
It seems that for some, couple-surfing is just a way of life in the digital world. For others, however, love and the Internet just don't mix.
Blog community response:
"It seems absurd to some people that my husband and I use a chat program to communicate--he's downstairs working on his projects on his desktop Mac and I'm upstairs on my iBook. And no, our house isn't that big. We're both within hollering distance. But why holler when you use the Internet?...In the evenings, we'd both be in our AC'd cocoon of a bedroom and we'd both be online, doing our own thing but still together. Well, it seems that we are not alone in our 'nerdiness.'"
--rushelc on LiveJournal
"On a year in year out basis, I'd guess we surf together more than we do most anything else together, except sleep. And I'd say we are about as info-addicted as the other, and the first one with a strong inclination to stop surfing and do something else usually prevails. Of course, unless the inclination to do something else is an activity outside the house, the laptop (and Internet) come with. Just in case, you know, we might want to look something up."
--great-eye on LiveJournal
"Despite the change in the dynamic of a modern relationship, the rest of the world is sinking into this dilemma as well. Disconnect is running rampant through various facets of our lives...Although the conveniences of correspondence through the Web heavily outweigh the benefits of a Web-less routine, I'm finding it more valuable to take a step away from what can ironically become a monotonous life of e-mail and the same few links over and over again."