“Digital Addiction: A Future Epidemic or Scare Mongering?”


California_Science_Center | Digital Addiction

The California Science Center’s Science Matters, a speakers program that explores science issues in the forefront of public concern, will present “Digital Addiction: A Future Epidemic or Scare Mongering?”

January 20, 2018 from 1:00-2:30 p.m. The program is free to the public and will take place in THE MUSES room in the Wallis Annenberg Building at the California Science Center.

The last decade has seen a proliferation of mobile digital devices where people spend a considerable amount of time in front of screens consuming digital media, taking photos, texting, and being active on social media.

Many researchers claim that this heavy exposure to screens is detrimental to the physical, mental, social and emotional health of users.  

Spending more time on these digital devices instead of engaging in face-to-face and real-world experiences is said to be particularly detrimental to young children’s healthy growth and development. Is there sufficient scientific evidence for these fears or is this mere scare mongering?

Others argue that the dire warnings of digital addiction are only a manifestation of collective anxieties typically generated by any new technology.

In this program a panel of experts will discuss these concerns from scientific and societal perspectives.

Conan Nolan, NBC4 Chief Political Reporter and Anchor of News Conference, will serve as moderator for this panel discussion.

Panelists Include:

Timothy Fong, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, UCLA; Co-director, UCLA Gambling Studies Program, Director, UCLA Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship.

Kaveri Subrahmanyam, Ph.D., Chair, Department of Child & Family Studies at California State University, Los Angeles, Associate Director, Children’s Digital Media Center @ Los Angeles(UCLA/CSULA).

Julie Albright, Ph.D., Lecturer, Department of Applied Psychology at the USC Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.

Marientina Gotsis, MFA, Associate Professor of Research, Interactive Media & Games Division, USCSchool of Cinematic Arts, Director, USC Creative Media & Behavioral Health Center.

Program attendees will have a chance to hear the debate on this issue and ask questions of the panelists at the end of the program. Admission is free. Register online: californiasciencecenter.org/sciencematters.

About the California Science Center

The California Science Center’s mission is as follows: “We aspire to stimulate curiosity and inspire science learning in everyone by creating fun, memorable experiences, because we value science as an indispensable tool for understanding our world, accessibility and inclusiveness, and enriching people’s lives.”

General Info

The California Science Center and IMAX Theater are located in historic Exposition Park just west of the Harbor (110) Freeway at 700 Exposition Park Drive, Los Angeles. Open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., except on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. General admission is free.

For recorded information, including IMAX show times, call 323.SCIENCE (323.724-3623). IMAX ticket prices range from $6.75 to $8.95. For advance ticket purchases, group rates, or to make reservations for any visiting group of 15 or more (required), call 213.744-2019.

For further information, please visit our website at www.californiasciencecenter.org.