[Work in progress]
I used to bristle at the term Luddite.
I guess I’m an early adopter. Not of technology, but the anxieties that come with it. You won’t see me cooing to buy the next iPhone, but worrying everytime I have to update the T&Cs. Does anyone read those anymore?
Since starting my PhD on disconnecting from the internet, I’ve found my habits to get worse. It’s as if every new kernel of knowledge pertaining to online addiction make me more addicted.
Luddites are framed as anti-progress. Against new ideas or innovation. This is a gross generalization. Luddites were against a particular type of progress – the mass industrialization that automated thousands of jobs in cotton and wool manufacturing in a certain point of history. The term specifically refers to a group of people in the early 19th century who destroyed the cotton and wool manufacturing machines that automated their jobs. Has anyone tried to destroy an iPhone? I dropped mine a full soapy sink of dishes and it still works.
Terms of derision can be taken back. Reoriented for a pedagogical purpose. Anyhow – these days I’ve been called a Luddite for showing a mere scepticism towards technology and connective culture. So I’m going to reclaim the term.
Maybe I’m a Luddite because I don’t know how to code or am starting a blog in 2018, when no one reads anymore. In ten years I’ll start a YouTube channel. Call it the Luddite’s delay.
I’m not anti tech but anti unfettered connection.
Today we’re lead to believe that being connected 24/7 is progress. If that’s the truth then sure, call me a Luddite.