We could have prevented a lot of damage and waste, with the "new" "social network" called Binky. Binky that dispenses with illusion that social networks give us useful information that we need to check frequently; Binky exists solely to pacify. But Binky's designed to never disappoint or enrage its users - and all your likes and comments disappear into the ether.
Binky is a social network app with no network and no socializing. And yet, Binky is not just as satisfying as “real” social apps like Twitter or Instagram, but even more satisfying than those services. Its posts are innocuous: competent but aesthetically unambitious photos of ordinary things and people. Should binkers feel the urge to express disgust at Linus Paulding or Lederhosen, they can swipe left, and Binky accommodates without consequence. And the app doesn’t court obsession by counting followers or likes or re-binks.
There’s a use of cigarettes beyond their chemical effects. Smoking gives people something to hold and something to do with their hands. McLuhan called it poise. And smartphones offer something similar. At the bus stop, in the elevator, in front of the television, on the toilet, the smartphone offers purpose to idle fingers. To use one is more like knitting or doodling than it is like work or play. It is an activity whose ends are irrelevant. One that is conducted solely to extract nervous attention and to process it into exhaust.
Social media is a little like smoking - it started with the elites and spread everywhere, then the elites got wise. Maybe that's what's happening now with social media too. The elites are now (belatedly) treating social media like a cesspool, but the masses are adopting it wholeheartedly. Perhaps Binky will be the Nicorette or e-cig that weans people off their destructive addiction.