17 January 2012

Creating Is Better Than Consuming

I discovered reddit.com in 2008, during the US presidential primaries. I was hunting for election news and kept winding up on reddit. My original goal was to become a more well informed person, and keep track of what was going on in the world. CNN, the Globe and Mail, and Time magazine were my original sources, but someone how reddit was always more attractive.

I’ve learned an awful lot of stuff from reddit: how to prevent acne, how to hold a relationship together and when to let go (from kleinbl00 ), and the events that led up to Arab Spring .

Eventually, I forgot about all the other sites I used to go to before reddit. Seriously, I have no idea what I used to do on the internet. Maybe I just checked my email then turned it off? What a concept.

Last December, I realized that I was going to fail my exams if I didn’t study, and I wouldn’t study if it was possible to flick back to reddit every time I got slightly bored. So I stopped. Reddit turns out to have been my drug of choice. I can’t go back because I don’t trust myself.

Fortunately, there are other ways to feel good besides getting an information hit every 30 seconds or so. Creating is just as rewarding as consuming, but since it takes longer and more effort, you don’t end up doing it if your drug of choice is handy for instant consumption. Since quitting reddit, I’ve built a couple websites, passed my exams with room to spare, and done a couple blog posts. But I still miss it.

The problem I’m facing just now is that reddit made me aware of all the incredibly neat things that people have done. It’s intimidating to do anything. Oh well. I’ll suck in public, I’m big enough.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm the same as you, I came to reddit during the US presidential primaries as well. I always thought that the long and oft-lamented decline in the general quality of my life was the fault of the stresses of my job (which I rather like) but recently I've begun to wonder if it is afer all my reddit addiction.

I started a 40 day no-reddit trial yesterday.