Experts believe increased screen time has lead to ‘Zoom Zombies’ on the road
During the pandemic people turned to social media to stay connected with loved ones, or use video conference apps, such as Zoom, to work or go to school — but experts believe all this screen time could turn us into ‘Zoom Zombies’.
“We have to remember what we’re doing when we’re on a Zoom call. Normally we have a Brady bunch screen where we’re looking at everyone’s face and we’re trying to pay attention to their facial emotions, and behaviors that they’re exhibiting on their face. It’s exhausting,” said Alise Bartley at FGCU.
Increasing screen time has lead to more distracted drivers on the road.
“There’s time we can have as many as 30 people on a screen at once, and we’re overwhelmed. Our brain needs to shut down because we’re processing so much information, so what do we do? Well we need to take a break. We jump in the car and we’re already overwhelmed and now we’re dealing with all the cars as we’re out driving and we can’t handle it, so we shut down,” said Bartley.
According to Root insurance, 64 percent of drivers check their phones often while on the road, and 54 percent feel distracted after video chats.
“There’s three important things that you can do as a driver, keep your eyes on the road, hands on the wheel, and your mind on driving. Doing multiple tasks, rather than focusing on driving — you’re endangering your life and everyone else’s life. Last year we had over 48,000 traffic crashes that resulted directly because of distracted driving. If you break that number down, that’s 932 distracted driving crashes a week in the state of Florida,” said Lt. Greg Bueno with Florida Highway Patrol.
If you’re on a video conference call, Bartley suggests taking a break, go for a walk, or ride a bike in between meetings.
“So I think we all need to pay attention. Let’s go ahead and be certain that we’re not doing these back to back meetings, maybe go ahead and be on for an hour, take a 20 minute break and then go ahead and be on again,” said Bartley.
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