August 18th 2016 archive

Permanently Time-Poor – Reading Response No. 5

This reading poses some interesting questions and assertions about our relationship with time as a result of living in an acceleration society. By ‘acceleration society,’ the author implies the rapid rate in which technological advances are occurring and effectively changing the way we choose to allocate and utilise our time during both work and leisure.

It is interesting to acknowledge the fact that although digital technologies are essentially designed to save us time, they do not always have this effect. It’s as if these technologies place a greater expectation on workers to get more done in a day than what was once expected without said devices. In saying this, the fact that time is money induces the need for maximum efficiency and productivity within as little time as possible, which while this can potentially increase leisure time, it can also make us feel more pressured and rushed.

Further, the constant connectivity that these technologies enable makes it harder to (literally) switch off from work, which can interfere with our leisure time. Elaborating on this, Wajcman acknowledges how the abundance of ICTs affects our leisure in the sense that we are constantly renewing our devices, which requires a regular investment in new skill acquisition. She also highlights the fact that although new while modern autonomous technologies, such as driverless cars and smart kitchens, promote themselves as being time-saving and time-efficient devices, they will not necessarily solve our time-related problems.

This reading puts forward some interesting ideas in relation to the work/life balance. While it does not give us the answers, it certainly positions us to think about our time-related priorities and the pace of which we wish to live our lives.