Emails 'pose threat to IQ'

Dr. Michael L. Ford

            It has been reported in the Guardian that the distractions of constant emails, text and phone messages are a greater threat to IQ and concentration than taking cannabis. Do you really believe that? Perhaps Glenn Wilson, psychologist from King's College, London University, who did research, commissioned by the IT firm Hewlett Packard may have something in certain cases. Let me explain why.

            Most people have e-mail boxes that are full of Spam, and I do not mean the processed meat either. A great many also receive a lot of what I call fluff mail like jokes and riddles, as well as online games, and some even receive cyber-porn. If you fill up your days with those sorts of things it is not likely, even if you get wittier (or jaded) that you will be gaining in intelligence. Then when we start talking about the average trite fare found in text and phone messages, we would have to conclude that at the very least much time is wasted in fruitless endeavor, and we have known that is harmful to brain function for a long time.

            You may have surmised already, if your IQ has not been diminished by e-mail, that I think it matters what we pay attention to in the things that come into our lives. If your e-mail is full of biblical teachings and subjects of import, and you are thinking on these things, I do not believe that you are going to find your intelligence quotient diminished by spending time in cyber-space. I have found as a practical matter in counseling that people who spend their time in legitimate biblical pursuits increase in brain function. If that is what you are getting through technology, I do not think it will have a deleterious effect because of how it is delivered.

According to the propaganda of the world staying at Holiday Inns Express is supposed to make you smarter. It seems to me a blanket claim for an average IQ loss for e-mail readers of 10 points, more than double the 4 point mean fall found in studies of cannabis users, is in the same category. And really, IQ testing is a very subjective way of determining intelligence anyway. But, if the people in the survey groups were selected because they were just muddling about a lot. Well, we already knew thatís not smart.

            Jonsquill Ministries

P. O. Box 752

Buchanan, Georgia 30113