Tech Talk Tuesday: Social Media is like Sex to your Brain

Updated: Tuesday, March 25 2014, 05:27 PM MDT
Tech Talk Tuesday: Social Media is like Sex to your Brain story image

By Lonnie Valencia

Today in Tech Talk Tuesday we tackle, an upcoming proposal that is aimed at limiting the NSA, why new technology is lost on our own El Paso Police Department, and why your brain thinks a post on your Facebook wall is the same as having sex.  Enough of the chit-chat, let's start talking tech.



I know it's only Tuesday, but Friday, March 28th is going to be an important day.  That's when President Obama is planning to release new legislation halting NSA's phone tapping collecting efforts.  If you haven't heard about Edward Snowden's top-secret document leak scandal by now, you've been under a rock.  The leak exposed NSA's Section 215 and PRISM programs, that were aimed at collecting data and cellular recordings from US residents.  The ALCU, civil liberty activists, and tech companies have all been asking for reform since the leaked documents.  Now according to "The New York Times" after forming a presidential review group, the Obama administration is ready to specifically address the Section 215 program.  I'm not going to venture to guess what the new proposed legislation will be, but I do know that no matter what it is, Congress still has to approve it.  

How many of you have seen those commercials from insurance companies boasting about their smartphone app, particularly the electronic insurance card.  "You're never without it!" the commercial says.  My wife got a ticket a while back and that was at the time I was thinking, "I'm the KFOX Tech Guy! I have to have the latest and greatest!" so I had installed my wife's phone with our digital insurance card from their insurance app.  Well, I guess I'm the only one in El Paso that thought of it as the El Paso Police Officer denied the digital copy and asked for the paper one.  After, my wife explained that her husband was an electronic freak, he reluctantly accepted it.  Then after going to the police station, paying court cost without going to court, taking defensive driving, and paying for the driver report thingy online, my wife was again asked to show proof of insurance.  She whips out her phone, shows the app and again she was told, "We'll take it, but I don't know if the judge will... we'll let you know in the mail."  Still at this moment I don't know if my wife's paperwork is approved or not.  This whole ordeal taught me and the wife three things.  One, read the fine print at the bottom of the digital card.  It says, it may not be accepted by all law enforcement. Two, our El Paso Police Department is one of those law enforcement agencies the app must be referring to. Three, pay a lawyer to deal with the ticket.  I want to make it perfectly clear that I have no ill will toward our men and women in blue.  From now on I'll just keep the paper copy in the glovebox.  That said, would it be that hard for the EPPD to keep up with the changing times and look into digital insurance cards?  It's convenient to have it on a device that never leaves your side.  And for you nosey people, the ticket was for not completely stopping at a four-way stop.  

Moving on to why you clicked on this article to begin with--your brain on sex.  That's right, I saved the best for last!  During sex your brain releases dopamine, which is your brains reward for a job well done.  This dopamine reward gets released during other times throughout the day, for example when you eat or exercise as well.  Researchers have now linked this dopamine reward to thought sharing.  And where do we share all of our thoughts these days?  Socially! Every time you share a post on Facebook, tweet a thought, or share an Instagram, your brain is swimming in dopamine which is telling you, "Job well done!"  So the next time you check your Facebook just remember that you are priming your brain to reward you as if you just had sex.  Now it's easy to see why some people can get addicted to social media!

That does it for this edition of Tech Talk.  Let me know if you've used an insurance app and don't forget to share this article, I promise it will make your brain release dopamine.  As always we would love your feedback/suggestions for this or our next edition, so feel free to send your comments to our resident Tech Guy Lonnie Valencia.

Tech Talk Tuesday: Social Media is like Sex to your Brain
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