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A Day of Social Silence


Any Given Sunday

January 20 · Issue #14 · View online

A sporadic letter of listening, reading, and watching suggestions.

This year we flew as a family to New Zealand to celebrate with the hobbits. It was our first time in such company. I now know the facts. Those creatures aren’t always shorter than four feet!
The adventure is complete, and now that I’ve returned safely?! to California I’d like to ask for your support and feedback on something…..
As we all know, the internet is great. It’s almost terrific. Nothing happened in 2018 to compel us to think about cancelling the internet.
The online world makes our lives richer, swifter, more entertaining and more enjoyable. But year and after year it becomes clear that the corner of it called social media fails to contribute to our feelings of happiness. For many, social media detracts. It drains our feelings of self worth. It knocks our confidence, exacerbates feelings of depression and keeps us in a particularly well-engineered spiral of dissatisfaction. 
At the start of this year, I vowed to do something — at scale.
Much like those little creatures in The Fellowship of the Ring, I’m embarking on a mission: to raise awareness around the effects of social media and, in particular, social media’s impact on mental health.
I’m calling for a day of social silence.
I’m not asking for a week. I’ve chosen one day, aligned with World Mental Health Day on 10.10.19, when the world will get a chance to leave social media in favour of being social. Don’t panic. It’s just twenty-four hours.
My ambition is to unite a wide range of people. You’re on the list, along with students at high schools and universities, musicians, filmmakers and members of the business community.
The challenge is to follow two simple directives;
  1. Don’t touch social media for a day.
  2. Ask others to do the same. 
Just imagine: we could wake to see nothing happening in all the feeds that don’t sustain. My children and friends would have to go outside.
It seems like a simple project. Accordingly, I’m building a website with no bells and whistles to help you count down to S-Day.
When the day arrives you won’t be asked to do anything. That’s the whole, beautiful point.
Could this be as important as BandAid back in 1984? Perhaps — though I don’t yet have the support of Spandau Ballet. Still, I’d love to get your support.
I hope I can count on you. Let’s heighten awareness around the issue. We’ve got to start somewhere. All I would like to know is whether I can say you’re in?
YES I’m all in  or NO Damian shut up

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