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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:46 pm 
 

Lately I've been a little concerned. I feel like I'm dumber than I used to be, maybe for a while. Well, perhaps not dumber, but less comprehending than I used to be. I feel like I have difficulty focusing more, more difficulty absorbing new ideas, and I just generally feel scatterbrained. Sort of like my mind is cloudy all the time.

I have a few theories as to why this may be.

1. Some sort of mild brain injury. Perhaps a few sharp blows and some headbanging in my teenage years have killed too many brain cells or somehow damaged part of my brain in a mild way. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the frontal lobes control short-term memory, attention, and etc. This may have lead to a decrease. However, I'm not sure if anything I could have done would have any sort of noticeable consequences. Also, I had an MRI for an unrelated matter about a year ago, and it came back normal. Although I heard mild physical problems wouldn't show up on an MRI.

2. Years of heavy internet usage has wired my brain and taught it to be accustomed to shallow reading, rapid content change, and things of that nature. Therefore, when I step into the real world, I have trouble focusing on things, taking in new information, and being fully aware. I have trained myself to be zoned out.

You are all intelligent people. Am I on to something, or could I be working myself up about nothing?
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themicrulah
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:52 pm 
 

If you weren't fully aware would you be aware of the fact that this is a possibility?
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mjollnir
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:03 pm 
 

Let me chime in here...What was this thread about, again?
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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:04 pm 
 

THEMICRULAH wrote:
If you weren't fully aware would you be aware of the fact that this is a possibility?


Lol, going all Socratic are we? I can still think, but I think it's focusing, and absorbing outside information I have a problem with, or forging mental connections or something. For instance, I sometimes have to read something over and over to understand it. It mostly seems to be a problem with print, but I haven't thought about it that deeply.

It's not just reading through. It's all sorts of things as I go through my life. Often times it seems like I'll not even notice obvious things, which is what I mean by "fully aware".
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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:05 pm 
 

mjollnir wrote:
Let me chime in here...What was this thread about, again?


I'm trying to figure out why my mind might be cloudy and dull feeling.
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themicrulah
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:07 pm 
 

My next question is: how high are you right now?
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mjollnir
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:10 pm 
 

I'm sorry...was making a lame joke.

Anyway, a lot of that has to do with what's going on in your life right now. Some things that you think do not affect your everyday thinking and cognitive ability may in fact have an extreme effect. Stress at home, work, school, etc. Even if it is good stress, it can have an affect. I guess what I'm saying is that more info is needed from you for us to come to any sort of conclusion.

THEMICRULAH wrote:
My next question is: how high are you right now?


And he could be making a very good point as well!
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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:15 pm 
 

THEMICRULAH wrote:
My next question is: how high are you right now?


Not at all.

Quote:
Anyway, a lot of that has to do with what's going on in your life right now. Some things that you think do not affect your everyday thinking and cognitive ability may in fact have an extreme effect. Stress at home, work, school, etc. Even if it is good stress, it can have an affect. I guess what I'm saying is that more info is needed from you for us to come to any sort of conclusion.


Perhaps it is stress. Or perhaps I've trained myself in such a way, as I said earlier, through the internet. Either way, those are fixable.

This particular moment isn't a good time for me to think deeply about my life, but you've set the ball rolling. Through perhaps some sort of stress could have something to do with it. Today I made a few elementary mistakes at work. That's what has me thinking about this so much. It's been on my mind for the last couple days.
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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:19 pm 
 

I'd be very surprised, and even generally amused, if you were able to give yourself some kind of concussion whilst headbanging.

While it's true that there are some indications that memory and attention span are affected somewhat by device addiction, not only are these effects nothing like permanent, there are way too many possible confounding variables here to outright blame the internet.

What's your alcohol intake like? How much gasoline/paint thinner/jenk do you huff on a daily basis? Do you have celiac disease? Do you sleep enough? I wouldn't be surprised that if you spend all your time on goddam 4chan or that abysmally laid-out world of pain reddit, things could get a little blinky from time to time. But I'm going to go with "take some time OFF THE FUCKING SHITERNET", read a couple books, listen to some albums, go outside (on a hike or some kind of dog walking adventure), focus on doing just one task at a time, get a focal length that's longer than two feet, cut down on intoxicants, and call us back in a month. If nothing's changed, go to the doctor.

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mjollnir
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:21 pm 
 

Grave_Wyrm wrote:
I'd be very surprised, and even generally amused, if you were able to give yourself some kind of concussion whilst headbanging.

While it's true that there are some indications that memory and attention span are affected somewhat by device addiction, not only are these effects nothing like permanent, there are way too many possible confounding variables here to outright blame the internet.

What's your alcohol intake like? How much gasoline/paint thinner/jenk do you huff on a daily basis? Do you have celiac disease? Do you sleep enough? I wouldn't be surprised that if you spend all your time on goddam 4chan or that abysmally laid-out world of pain reddit, things could get a little blinky from time to time. But I'm going to go with "take some time OFF THE FUCKING SHITERNET", read a couple books, listen to some albums, go outside (on a hike or some kind of dog walking adventure), focus on doing just one task at a time, get a focal length that's longer than two feet, cut down on intoxicants, and call us back in a month. If nothing's changed, go to the doctor.


What he said...and lay off the masturbation for a while!!! You young'ns.
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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 11:31 pm 
 

Grave_Wyrm wrote:
I'd be very surprised, and even generally amused, if you were able to give yourself some kind of concussion whilst headbanging.

While it's true that there are some indications that memory and attention span are affected somewhat by device addiction, not only are these effects nothing like permanent, there are way too many possible confounding variables here to outright blame the internet.

What's your alcohol intake like? How much gasoline/paint thinner/jenk do you huff on a daily basis? Do you have celiac disease? Do you sleep enough? I wouldn't be surprised that if you spend all your time on goddam 4chan or that abysmally laid-out world of pain reddit, things could get a little blinky from time to time. But I'm going to go with "take some time OFF THE FUCKING SHITERNET", read a couple books, listen to some albums, go outside (on a hike or some kind of dog walking adventure), focus on doing just one task at a time, get a focal length that's longer than two feet, cut down on intoxicants, and call us back in a month. If nothing's changed, go to the doctor.


Well, not a concussion. But if you do with force then your brain can overcome the cushioning fluid and hit the front of your skull. Remember "shaken baby syndrome"? Their non-fully developed brains hit their skull and can kill them. Or, think of car accidents. The extreme forces caused can sometimes cause brain injury.

Now, I'm not saying headbanging is remotely anything like that, but, perhaps it can kill some brain cells if done over a period of time, or hard enough?

I don't drink, don't huff anything, don't have celiac disease, slept about 7 1/2 hours last night, and have had a low-grade headache for most of the day and part of last night. Through that might be from hydrocephalus I've had almost my entire life. I have a shunt that drains it. That might not be the cause, but it could be an explanation.

Also, I've never been to 4chan, have only been to reddit once or twice in my life. To be fair, I have been reading a lot of books lately. I still have a stack to get through.

Edit: Oh, and I'm not addicted to the internet. I've cut down very significantly before and been fine. However, I have used it heavily for years.
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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:09 am 
 

Unifying_Disorder wrote:
that might be from hydrocephalus I've had almost my entire life. I have a shunt that drains it.

Why didn't I think of that?

Actually, that's a little concerning. If you're starting to have noticeable problems thinking with a pre-existing brain condition, you should talk to a specialist. A general practitioner might not be able to answer your questions precisely enough, since that's a niche and delicate condition.

And you're right, shaken baby syndrome is really traumatic, but that's significantly different than headbanging. Babies have really weak neck muscles, soft skulls, and under-developed brains and craniums. The band doesn't pick you up and flail you around. Car wrecks are massive impacts. Not even a blow square to the face in a pit with a concrete floor on the other end would do that to you. To be similar, you'd have to balcony-dive onto a bar stool. Don't work yourself up with false comparisons.

The easiest way to test the internet's effect on you is to eliminate or significantly reduce your interaction with it for a couple weeks. Manage your stress and get over 7 hours of sleep every single night in the meantime. You might have a sleep debt, you might have pressure on your brain fucking with your cognition. Go to the doctor, and get more sleep than you think you need. I mean, shit, it could be a nutritional or salt deficiency for all I know. I'm not sure how we can help you other than encouraging you to go to a specialist to rule out the most dangerous factor.

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mjollnir
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:12 am 
 

Yeah, if you've had hydrocephalus all your life, you may want to get checked out. Not to freak you out or anything but better safe than sorry. ;)
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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 12:32 am 
 

Unifying_Disorder wrote:
Well, not a concussion. But if you do with force then your brain can overcome the cushioning fluid and hit the front of your skull.

That's what a concussion is. It doesn't necessarily have to be hugely violent to qualify. It's actually a big problem in football as it turns out. It doesn't take much to give you one, and the effects can be really subtle. But even though they're deceptively easy to get, they aren't THAT easy. As far as I know, it takes an impact of some kind to make your brain ricochet like that. Not something like headbanging which your body can compensate for. I tend to think the worst you'd get from headbanging is something akin to whiplash.

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the_raytownian
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:15 am 
 

I doubt it does. Then again, I recently heard that excessive use of cellphones for "snapping and storing" events does alter memory, because the brain thinks "this information is non-essential since I have it stored on a phone", or something to that effect, which causes people to forget many details from the experience.

Never had a smartphone, but I will say, taking a look through my youtube veiwing history, I quickly forget having watched quite a lot of things, and I think the easy access to information has a comparable effect, because the mind's frequently distracted by the suggested videos, descriptions, what's in your other tabs, etc.

It's not causing you to become retarded or permanently re-wiring your brain or anything, though... It's not something you can't easily get past and unlearn, either. It's basically the same as listening to an album while you read... You're not really going to catch much of one or the other, depending on which has your focus, but you can easily go back and focus on them individually.

I've been using the internet off and on since 1997, and I think it's done far less damage in 17 years than drinking has in 5. Even when completely sober, I'm not nearly as quick or astute as I used to be, and I often experience "mental fog" and an inability to remember words that are on the tip of my tongue.

Maybe it'd be different if I were literally raised in front of a computer, but it's not like I haven't spent the majority of my life online anyway. I was only 8 or 9 when I started using the internet, after all.

EDIT: Oh, wow. It looks like Grave_Wyrm pretty much said the exact same things I did... In short: Jenk will fuck you up. Don't try it even once. I think the internet is the least of your worries, too, having read the posts about your medical history.
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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:51 am 
 

the_raytownian wrote:
EDIT: Oh, wow. It looks like Grave_Wyrm pretty much said the exact same things I did... In short: Jenk will fuck you up. Don't try it even once. I think the internet is the least of your worries, too, having read the posts about your medical history.


I don't know what jenk is. Is that some kind of booze?

Well, my head feels fine right now, and if there were a problem, it would probably be more severe. That's actually why I had the MRI, just as a checkup. Came back normal.
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themicrulah
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:55 am 
 

Unifying_Disorder wrote:
I don't know what jenk is. Is that some kind of booze?

:lol:

Yes, yes it is.
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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 2:24 pm 
 

Unifying_Disorder wrote:
I don't know what jenk is. Is that some kind of booze?

I don't know who the fuck thought this heinousness up, but that's humans for ya. Always searching. Always trying.

From Urban Dictionary:
jenkem
Fermented mixture of ripened sewage used primarily in Africa and third-world Near Asian countries as a glue-high substitute.

Related terms: shit, drugs, butt hash, and "forced hand job" (for some fucking reason)

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Marag
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 3:32 pm 
 

After a decade of heavy internet use, I turned into a slobbering retard. Or maybe not since there are other things that could cause this as well, but I definitely feel dumber than when I was 15 years old and I feel like I'm getting dumber each day. It might not actually affect your intelligence, but internet can do a number on your attention span, if only for the bad habits you acquire through it.

Tell this to your doctor though, you have a cephalic condition and it could be related to what you are feeling.

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Poisonfume
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 5:35 pm 
 

Marag wrote:
After a decade of heavy internet use, I turned into a slobbering retard. Or maybe not since there are other things that could cause this as well, but I definitely feel dumber than when I was 15 years old and I feel like I'm getting dumber each day. It might not actually affect your intelligence, but internet can do a number on your attention span, if only for the bad habits you acquire through it.


This is me too. Sitting in front of a monitor most of the day burns me out, and it also means I spend less time reading books, studying my interests and just challenging and exercising my brain in general. I've become so drained and unfocused that I will often spend 20 minutes trying to figure out how to phrase a brief reply like this on a forum thread. Despite being a law student and actually a decent oral debater, after spending my day at the PC (which my coursework forces me to do) I feel like I've devolved into the dumbest I've been all my life.

Spending too much time online is known to have this effect on people, OP. If we can rule out your pre-existing condition, I'd say with certainty that your solution is to replace the PC with a good book and a sudoku puzzle or two.
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severzhavnost
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 6:00 pm 
 

Depends what you do online eh. I mean, spending your whole life on hockeyfights.com and catsthatlooklikehitler.com (two of my favs), probably don't do much good for the intellogence...
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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 6:10 pm 
 

Poisonfume wrote:
Marag wrote:
After a decade of heavy internet use, I turned into a slobbering retard. Or maybe not since there are other things that could cause this as well, but I definitely feel dumber than when I was 15 years old and I feel like I'm getting dumber each day. It might not actually affect your intelligence, but internet can do a number on your attention span, if only for the bad habits you acquire through it.


This is me too. Sitting in front of a monitor most of the day burns me out, and it also means I spend less time reading books, studying my interests and just challenging and exercising my brain in general. I've become so drained and unfocused that I will often spend 20 minutes trying to figure out how to phrase a brief reply like this on a forum thread. Despite being a law student and actually a decent oral debater, after spending my day at the PC (which my coursework forces me to do) I feel like I've devolved into the dumbest I've been all my life.

Spending too much time online is known to have this effect on people, OP. If we can rule out your pre-existing condition, I'd say with certainty that your solution is to replace the PC with a good book and a sudoku puzzle or two.


Seriously? That's exactly how I feel. Like I've somehow gone downhill since I was 15 or 16. It's not just attention. It's connecting ideas when I read print, or simply being aware of my surrounding out in the world. It's like I struggle to engage myself.

Perhaps that really is the explanation.


Edit:

Quote:
After a decade of heavy internet use, I turned into a slobbering retard. Or maybe not since there are other things that could cause this as well, but I definitely feel dumber than when I was 15 years old and I feel like I'm getting dumber each day.


Wait a minute, you're talking in past tense. Do you mean you cut down on your internet usage and you still feel this way?
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PvtNinjer
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2014 1:04 pm 
 

Obviously, I cannot speak for others, but quite frequently I feel like websites such as Reddit and Buzzfeed, especially when combined with easy access through technology like tablets and smartphones has made it difficult for me to focus in an effect that I feel must be what ADD feels like. I've trained my brain to get that instant gratification of clicking the links that it can be hard for me to focus on something (for example: reading for pleasure) or to just generally be present of mind because I'm itching to click that next link, move on to the next novelty. It's especially bad knowing that I could easily pull out my phone and just start browsing. It's addictive and, for myself at least, definitely an unhealthy use of my time.

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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:32 pm 
 

It also can't be overlooked that sitting down for hours on end, breathing shallowly, gently squishing your organs with your hunched upper body while your desk chair cuts off the circulation in your legs is a factor.

That's why people do things like this:
Image

Though this is more my speed:
Image
That guy .. isn't me, though.

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Unifying_Disorder
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2014 10:23 pm 
 

Grave_Wyrm wrote:
It also can't be overlooked that sitting down for hours on end, breathing shallowly, gently squishing your organs with your hunched upper body while your desk chair cuts off the circulation in your legs is a factor.


I suppose lack of exercise could be a factor. Once a week I go horseback riding, but other than that, I don't get much strenuous activity. I'm a completely healthy weight, but I could be in better shape for sure.
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Kahalachan
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 2:17 am 
 

Depends on what you're doing. If you're looking at porn, then yeah your mind will get dull. Constantly reading Wikipedia? Probably not.

If that's all you do and lack exercise, that will have an effect. Exercise has been linked to neuroplasticity so sitting around forever on the comp might outweigh any benefits to whatever you're doing on the computer. At the very least get up and stretch after an hour or so of sedentary activity like everything recommends.

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LeMiserable
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:25 am 
 

It dulls the mind only for the people who are generally sensitive to having their mind dulled, or people who ask for it really. (porn for example)

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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 12:23 pm 
 

Porn-negative sex-haters. Porn is not going to dull your mind. If you have the intelligence level of a donut it might give you the wrong idea about how to treat women or what sex is actually like, but .. dulling your mind? you trippin.

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PhilosophicalFrog
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 12:37 pm 
 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/0 ... 18607.html

OH REALLY???????

eh, maybe not.

But, I will say that anything in excess is no good, and I really fell into a rut with internet/drink/drug stuff, and it's a nasty cycle. So, just go outside and be nice to be people.
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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 12:58 pm 
 

Thrust! Parry!

"Yikes. So does that mean porn can really shrink guys' brains? Not necessarily, the researchers say. 'It's not clear, for example, whether watching porn leads to brain changes or whether people born with certain brain types watch more porn,' study author Dr. Simone Kühn of the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin told Reuters in an email."

Plus, one study/64 participants/very limited brain regions, etc.

I am in full support of your final sentence. Social engagement is very good for the brain. :)

edit: and while we're on the subject, I've been finding the Huffington Post's headlines to be consistently sensationalist and frequently in contradiction to the substance in the article. It makes me have to actually read the article, which is poopy. ;)

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PhilosophicalFrog
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 1:18 pm 
 

Yeah, hence my little blurb about "maybe not" - HuffPo has very click-bait titles...ultimately, that study just went: "yeah man, it could be bad, but so is everything in excess, so try not to do it". I will say that excessive masturbation (or anything that gives an instant pleasure, much like drug use or drinking) are best done with the idea in mind that they will make you lazy....or at least, without ambition. In that regard, the Internet does indeed dull the mind.
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Grave_Wyrm
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 1:24 pm 
 

Definitely a decent point. The good part about masturbation is that eventually you're just spent. :)

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TheExodusAttack
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2014 4:49 am 
 

the internet is the dam future,,, i'm logged the fuck in at all times..,, out here committing cyber crimes on the daily. join the cyborg uprising or be crushed. i'm upgrading to missle seeking rocket launcher arms and massive treads from the waist down as aSAP as possible. you've all been warned
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Neff
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Fri Apr 25, 2014 8:14 pm
Posts: 23
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2014 9:25 am 
 

That depends on what you're doing on the internet and how long.
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DennisDemoniarch
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:55 pm
Posts: 72
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2014 4:47 pm 
 

Computers and the content of general shared and liked pages via book face or your space and twitchy or beeper, is usually content definitely in agreement towards your original post suggesting the possibility of getting dumber.

Turn on the TV and watch a few hours of reality television... most definitely you are dumber than prior to those few hours.



Considering all the real science and issues that affect mankind daily on a whole versus the actual concern or awareness level of them... supports your theory. Welcome to dumb. Planet Earth... almost everyone. ...but maybe it's always been that way, real knowledge has always been a very protected secret.

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overtenmy
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:09 pm
Posts: 58
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2014 9:41 pm 
 

I would say it probably depends on how you are using the internet. If you're busy watching cat videos and such it probably won't help. Just the same as if you watch tv but only watch Fox News or reality tv. It depends on what content you are reading or watching.

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Unifying_Disorder
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2011 6:52 pm
Posts: 981
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Jun 08, 2014 12:53 am 
 

overtenmy wrote:
I would say it probably depends on how you are using the internet. If you're busy watching cat videos and such it probably won't help. Just the same as if you watch tv but only watch Fox News or reality tv. It depends on what content you are reading or watching.


I think it has more to do with the nature of the internet more than the content. I do a lot of reading online. It doesn't tend towards the sort of deep reading you would get with print. You know, thinking deeply about it, deconstructing it, and so on. Online, the eyes glaze over, the mind reads but doesn't follow. The intellect glances over the words and ideas, but doesn't challenge itself.

It's sort of like junk food. It might taste good, but it has no nutritional value. It's almost an empty exercise. Such is the nature of the internet, where any topic of any shade is available, where tab after tab can be left waiting to be gotten to. Most of the internet is by it's very nature shallow, fleeting, and bombards the brain with multiple sources of information at the same time.

It's no wonder why it might train the mind to be the same way.
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the_raytownian
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 1:09 am
Posts: 2134
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Sun Jun 08, 2014 1:40 am 
 

overtenmy wrote:
Just the same as if you watch tv but only watch Fox News

Excellent use of a trite cliche, congratulations!
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overtenmy
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:09 pm
Posts: 58
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Jun 08, 2014 5:03 pm 
 

the_raytownian wrote:
overtenmy wrote:
Just the same as if you watch tv but only watch Fox News

Excellent use of a trite cliche, congratulations!

Yes perhaps that is cliche but it is true, as with most news on TV. Most of the news that is covered is junk food. Plus how many more times do we need to hear about Benghazi?LOL!


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the_raytownian
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jun 13, 2006 1:09 am
Posts: 2134
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Sun Jun 08, 2014 5:58 pm 
 

overtenmy wrote:
Yes perhaps that is cliche but it is true, as with most news on TV.

Precisely.

I just shudder to think people who bash Fox News might actually consider something like MSNBC a better alternative, and this is coming from someone who dislikes Fox News a great deal.

Anyway, on the subject of pornography... I think there's a point where you can spend way too much time on it, but I don't think it dulls your mind as much as it dulls your emotions. The fact that there's such a big market for scummy "brutal sex" pornographers who make pornos featuring what could arguably be considered contractual rape (almost always perpetuated against already-damaged individuals who have been fucked since they were 8 and think it's all they're good for) should tell you something.

What's even more upsetting is they sell "blooper reel" DVD's of girls screaming and crying because they're in pain from being penetrated by two men at once, and apparently that's hilarious because they're just stupid crybaby whores and they deserve it.

Yes, I've seen this, and it disgusts me beyond description that it's legal, or that there's even a market for it... If that's not the perfect example of how porn dulls people emotionally, IDK what is. I guess you could argue that the market for that kind of shit consists mainly of future Ted Bundys who were "like that" to begin with, but it certainly doesn't help things that there's so much of it out there.
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