Technology comes with a Choice – use it or not.

Avowedly, some future inventions we are confronted with in some movies are scary. Destructive robots out of control and aggressive clones wanting to rule the world are nothing I want to see in real life. But there are also people, like my mum, who are reluctant or even afraid of new technologies we young people take for granted. But why is it actually this way and how can we convince our mums to update?

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Wiped out bank accounts

Due to the American Psychiatric Association  it is common that we feel a little insecure dealing with a new system or gadget. This nervousness is nothing new, it has already been existing since the Industrial Revolution, when inventions sprouted everywhere. But the first reason for anxiety is a certain loss of control.  If we don’t know how a new piece of technology works, our imaginations fill in the details – which for some people leads to the fear of clearing their bank accounts by pushing the wrong button.

It’s human nature to want to be in control of our environment, and it’s scary to think that we might not have as much control as we had hoped.

Ignore the tool, don’t be the fool

What cannot really be called a fear releaser is what other experts claim is the reason for this anti-technology behavior. These relevant people are too proud or inertial to give up what they are comfortable with the unknown in exchange. Along the lines of “Better is the enemy of good!”  they are not even willing to try new things out which is mostly also reflected in other psychological features. Therefore an excuse is better than doing poorly.

Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong

Consistent with Murphy’s Law, declaring the worst imaginable for likely to happen, the third group of scaredy cats is classified. Hearing about horrific incidents like credit cards abused on the web or lost privacy through the use of Facebook, these people keep light-years away from the Internet for instance. Because they do not know how to handle these problems that could maybe occur, they feel inadequate as well as incompetent which triggers a sense of hopelessness and helplessness. Basically it is only the worst case scenarios or even the plastic they are frightened of. But these people are the ones that are the easiest to convince somehow according to experts.

Future technology – it can even get worse

Until today, technologies have helped mankind for the most part, but what about the future?  Europe’s leading futurist Patrick Dixon has a precise opinion on this topic. As reported by him, there is no reason for fearing technologies, even if we don’t know what will be up in a couple of years. They are neutral and essential to survive and only the way we humans use it is decisive. So we can say it is just like with genetic modification and Co., itself is a great opportunity, we have to use these given chances responsibly.

Still, especially older people will probably not be persuaded facing these facts.

How is it possible to show them what they are missing?

Author Abigail Stokes explains in this great video how afraid people can learn how to deal with new technologies – assumed they want it:

So making them do it themselves is the key. And if they are stubborn and don’t want to use it even if you want them to? Depends on the person. Either you just let it be or you feel the person’s pain in some way. Rather than just coming to them and saying “here’s this new great thing and here’s how you use it” , you should try to talk to them about their challenges, frustrations and what they are looking for and then step by step show them the benefits new technologies might bring them. Once they have realized how easy something can be understood, they will become more interested and accustomed.

I am sure everyone of us knows one person like this, so let’s try to convince them – now!

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2 comments

  1. […] is reasonable due to the fact that there are for instance a lot of people who suffer from techno-phobia and who are consequently more likely to not consider sharing online. Thus, a huge part of the […]

  2. […] done a lot of research on both topics of Smart Homes (click and click) and fear of technologies (click) I have found something that aroused my interest and unifies both in some point. My topic obviously […]

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