Michael Mercier, President of Screen Education, today delivered the Common Hour lecture to the Freshman class of Hiram College in Hiram, OH.
The lecture, titled "What Will Be Your Role In Preventing Abuses of Our Global Wireless Network?", sought to get students to think about the massive cultural changes that will continue to take place as we layer on top of our current wireless network a new wave of very advanced technologies, to be ever vigilant of the unintended negative consequences and intended malevolent uses of these new technologies, and to take an activist approach to ensuring that these things are kept in check. A full description of the lecture appears below.
A decade after deploying an amazing global wireless information network some problems are emerging: apps that are engineered to be addictive are sapping our human potential, tech providers are violating our free speech and privacy rights, we encounter a toxic, divided online social and political environment, and governments are creating surveillance systems that limit individual freedom. Some of these problems impact social classes disproportionately. As new technologies are layered on top of this global wireless network --- AI, IoT, drones, robots, self-driving cars, sensors, and neural interfaces --- we can expect additional problems to emerge. A key question of our time will be, “How do we maintain the advantages this network affords us, while mitigating its problems?”. Michael Mercier, President of Screen Education, will ask you to consider what you as an individual can do to protect yourself, your community, and society at large.
Michael Mercier, President of Screen Education, Meets With Crestwood High School Administrators To Discuss Phone Ban
Michael Mercier, President of Screen Education, today met with Dave McMahon, Principal of Crestwood High School in Mantua, OH, to learn how Crestwood's smartphone ban had been faring 2 months after implementation.
Crestwood had instituted the phone ban for the first time during this 2019/2020 school year. In an effort to make the launch of the ban as smooth as possible, Crestwood had invited SCreen Education to deliver seminars to students, parents and teachers at the beginning of the school year.
Crestwood reported that the ban was going quite smoothly, with very little disruption and ready compliance by students. Teachers reported finding that student behavior, engagement, social climate, and academic focus had all improved as a result of the ban.
Michael Mercier, President of Screen Education, Speaks To LEAAD Coalition Meeting At Loveland Middle School
Michael Mercier, President of Screen Education, spoke to the October Loveland Educating Against Alcohol and Drugs (LEAAD) Coalition Meeting today about tech addiction --- its causes and consequences. The LEAAD Coalition is comprised of a team of teachers, staff, administrators, and resource officers. The meeting was held at Loveland Middle School in Loveland, OH.
This weekend Screen Education partnered with Hiram College to provide Hiram College students with a digital detox retreat experience.
The retreat took the form of a camping trip to Ohiopyle State Park in Ohiopyle, PA. The retreat began on Thursday, October 2, and lasted through Sunday, October 6. Twelve Hiram College students participated in the retreat.
On Friday participants went white water rafting, and on Saturday participants took a tour of Frank Lloyd Wright's iconic Fallingwater, a home he designed in the 1930's for the Kaufman family of Pittsburgh.
During the retreat students were required to spend some time each day doing individual written reflection exercises, and to participate in group discussions in which they reflected on their experience of being without their phones, and the implications this had for their relationship to information technology in their daily lives.
This is the second digital detox retreat Screen Education and Hiram College have partnered on, and they will use insights gained from these events to refine their digital detox model.