Thursday, May 29, 2008

Seven habits of obsessively connected people

1. Obsessive compulsive blogging disorder: Marked by intrusive thoughts and repeated posting, the syndrome typically involves constant, irrational worrying about comments on the latest blog posts and feelings that something bad will happen if he or she does not post at least 20 times a day. It is related to obsessive searching disorder, whose telltale signs include excessive use of Microsoft and Yahoo search engines.

2. Social network schizophrenia: Disturbed moods, thoughts and behavior that make it difficult for the patient to distinguish fact from Facebook. Hallucinations include friends throwing sheep at them. People with social network schizophrenia believe their hallucinations are real and the rest of the world is nuts, making it difficult to communicate with them or even attempt to help without using the Superpoke feature on Facebook.

3. Digital depression: Dark moods, feelings of loss or lower self-esteem resulting from being dissed by conference-roving Twitter mobs, getting unfriended, unlinked or unfollowed on your favorite social network or microblogging platform -- or getting zero comments on your blog posts.

4.FriendFeed phobia: Characterized by a deep-seated fear that if you use FriendFeed, you will find out you actually have no friends.

5. Twitterer's Syndrome: Related to Tourette's syndrome, an involuntary, sudden, rapid, recurrent 140-character typing tic. To wit: "I'm not sure what's noisier. Twitter or my baby who is teething. I think the baby wins, but not by much," Scoble says.

6. Binge surfing disorder: Consuming more page views in a single sitting than most average people could in a two-week period. Characterized by abnormal craving for updates from Valleywag and VentureBeat. Side effects can be severe. Treatment varies. Consult your shrink.

7. Post-traumatic inbox disorder: Feelings of helplessness... and loss of control triggered by overwhelming influx of e-mails, resulting in an inability to sleep, work or enjoy life. It is related to post-traumatic update disorder: the failure to update your status on Facebook and other services, which leads to generalized anxiety.

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