Instant Gratification

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"How readily our thoughts swarm upon a new object, lifting it a little way, as ants carry a blade of straw so feverishly, and then leave it." - Virginia Woolf

Action, feedback and data online are often instantaneous and lightweight. Life is not. What's missing is time.

A disparity between conceiving of an idea and conceiving of the time requited to implement, built, research, complete that idea. In Japan there are a number of older adolescents who still live with their parents and consume the latest fashion trends. They are locked into a cycle of value consumption, and all meaning in their world - all social relations - are tied to that symbolic value. This may result in the case of an individual wanting to do too many things and not having the time to do them.

Is there a danger of adolescents not being able to grasp the concept of anything taking time, and as a result not understanding what to do with life because their attention is fragmented and excited?

There are some mental processes that can only run when there is no stimulus [1][citation needed]. The brain online is in a constant state of stimulus.

Are there concerns of a fragmented memory? Dumping unrelated but instantaneous memory next to other memories? Understanding particularities of particle physics on Wikipedia in two hours but not spending the two years in the lab actually absorbing the data by trial and error?

There is a lot to be studied here.

Instant gratification as a relationship building resource

One study suggests the instant gratification of some forms of communication (such as instant messaging) makes them preferable over other forms that require more time for a recipient to respond (such as email). This instant gratification is felt by the users to improve relationships over time, maintain closeness in relationships, and allows for freer expression.



  1. Citation needed