Randi Zuckerberg, sister of Mark Zuckerberg, sees a clear and present danger for the youth of America: Internet addiction. In fact, she's even penned a new children's book about it, called Dot. The story concerns a tech-savvy little girl who can't stop engaging with the very social media culture Zuckerberg's brother helped to create. "Dot loves technology," writes Zuckerberg on her blog. "She’s obsessed with her devices (sound familiar?), but with a little push, she’s reminded that life’s a little bit richer when you look up from the screen." The goal is to get parents talking to their kids about the real-world relationships, more fruitful than any fostered on the Internet's many, many distractions like, uh, Facebook.
Here's a trailer:
That's not all. After you've read Dot with your child and extracted the iPad Mini from his or her vice-like grip, you can hand them a Dot Doll to squeeze and poke (but not capital-P "Poke") in lieu of a touchscreen. The Dot Doll, sadly, does not feature Facebook connectivity. Perhaps her beta version.
Meanwhile, Zuckerberg has also written a book for adults called Dot Complicated, a memoir-meets-sermon against the deleterious effects of technological dependence. In it, Zuckerberg "addresses the multifaceted complications that technology brings into our lives today, including issues of social identity, authenticity,and the future of social change." Oh, and also "the perils of photo tags." Call it Jaron Lanier lite?