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Strauss's avatar

Is Fluther addictive, or just habit-forming?

Asked by Strauss (21176points) February 20th, 2015

I came upon this Q, and it occured to me that we might all be addicted. What constitutes an addiction, as opposed to a habit? Is it the information we share, or the personalities of our fellow jellies, or some combination of the two, or anything else?

Note: this is not intended to be a survey, or a Q with an “either/or” scenario.

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17 Answers

ucme's avatar

Not in the least bit addictive, so I guess that just leaves it as a habit.
Unless it’s something else, like just a thing.

thorninmud's avatar

I’d say that it’s both addictive and habit-forming. The main distinction, in my mind, between an addiction and a habit is that addictions are activities that are compelling because they trigger the brain’s reward system: When X happens you’re rewarded by a dopamine release, so you keep doing whatever helps make X happen. Habits are routines that we follow because they provide some comfort in the face of anxiety.

There can certainly be overlap between addiction and habit. Fluther is addictive in that I get a definite dopamine boost when a juicy question pops up on the board. I get a boost when I write an answer that pleases me, and another one when it pleases someone else. I get a boost when a friend sends me a PM, or when someone follows me. I start to feel a little…I don’t know…listless if none of that has happened in a while. So I keep checking the boards for a juicy question (or ask one, if I’m really desperate), and try engaging in more discussions in the hope that they’ll turn into occasions for more boosts. That’s classic addiction stuff (though pretty harmless, thankfully).

And Fluthering is also a habit, in that it becomes something I do as a comforting routine when I’m dealing with boredom or a stressful situation. It’s a little bit of break, like smoking a cigarette or snacking is for other people.

Coloma's avatar

I’d say more of a habit than a true addiction, as @thorninmud says.
I do have my morning Fluther routine. make coffee, log on the see what’s shakin’ down in Fluther Town, browse and read for about an hour, ( my hour is up now haha ) and then, start my day. I also end my day reading Fluther before bed. However….when I am away or out of town or traveling I leave my laptop at home and do not feel the need to take my habit with me.

ibstubro's avatar

I tend to be a binge Flutherer.
As long as I allow the binge, I’m obsessive.
If I’m gone for a few days, it’s almost with regret that I return. I dread coming back and it being one of those really slow traffic days.

zenvelo's avatar

An addiction is something that interferes with your life in such a way that there are adverse consequences.

If you answer YES to four or more answers, you may have a serious problem with your Fluthering:

1 Do you lose time from work due to Fluthering?
2. Is Fluthering making your home life unhappy?
3. Do you Fluther because you are shy with other people?
4. Is Fluthering affecting your reputation?
5. Have you ever felt remorse after Fluthering?
6. Have you gotten into financial difficulties as a result of Fluthering?
7. Do you turn to lower companions and an inferior environment when Fluthering?
8 Does your Fluthering make you careless of your family’s welfare?
9 Has your ambition decreased since Fluthering?
10 Do you crave a Fluther at a definite time daily?
11 Do you want to Fluther the next morning?
12 Does Fluthering cause you to have difficulty in sleeping?
13 Has your efficiency decreased since Fluthering?
14 Is Fluthering jeopardizing your job or business?
15 Do you Fluther to escape from worries or trouble?
16 Do you Fluther alone?
17 Have you ever had a complete loss of memory as a result of Fluthering?
18 Has your physician ever treated you for Fluthering?
19 Do you Fluther to build up your self-confidence?
20 Have you ever been to a hospital or institution on account of Fluthering?

Coloma's avatar

@zenvelo LOL…yes, I Fluther alone, occasionally with a glass or 3 of wine, beer or champagne, and, I start Fluthering first thing in the morning, oh noooo….no more Barefoot champagne Fluthering for me, do you suggest I check myself into a rehab facility? haha

Strauss's avatar

Maybe we need a “Rehab” tab (similar to@janbb’s Banana tab).

stanleybmanly's avatar

Isn’t the question redundant? Isn’t habit forming merely a polite term for addiction?

Coloma's avatar

@stanleybmanly Perhaps, but hey, a spoonful of sugar helps the denial go down. lol

ucme's avatar

“Might as well face it, you’re addicted to Fluth”

longgone's avatar

I do have an “addicted” mode. It feels distinctly different from my usual Fluthering: I re-load the page frequently, and I get annoyed if nothing new pops up. It’s quite stressful, and I usually turn off my device. I think it’s a result of being unhappy in some way, and it often happens when I’m not fully on Fluther, but doing ten other things at the same time.

Then, there’s the calm, collected Fluthering. That feels healthy. I get to engage with smart people, some of whom are friends. I learn new things, and broaden my horizon. Sometimes, a particular PM makes my day, or a very good question gnaws at me until I’ve found an answer. I consider Fluther a perfect place for exercising my mind.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Sure, I fluther every day but I can quit any time. Really. I’m not addicted. I don’t have a problem. Nope, not me.
The customer deadline is 5 days away so I’d better buckle down and get it done. But before I do I think I’ll check and see if anyone has sent me a PM. Nope. No problem at all.

Dutchess_III's avatar

When I left that time, for about a month, it took 3 or 4 days before the desire to check Fluther started fading. After a month, I didn’t think about it much any more. I don’t remember why I came back tho. I think someone asked me to. Which was nice.

Mimishu1995's avatar

I’m going to use @zenvelo‘s questionnaire to check my affiction.
1. No, mostly.
2. No, my home life stays the same as before I knew Fluther.
3. No, I’m regarded as being talkative in real life.
4. No, what reputation?
5. No, I can’t understand why I have to feel remorse.
6. Not at all.
7. No.
8. No, my relationship stays the same as before.
9. No. I’m still aiming for the same thing.
10. Yes. I want to Fluther at least once everyday. But “want” is one thing and “can” is another.
11. Yes. But the same as 10.
12. Yes, but only when there is a special event like the last April Fool.
13. No. I’m still studying normally.
14. No. I’m still going to school and haven’t missed a schoolday due to Fluther.
15. Yes, I think.
16. Yes. No one knows I’m here.
17. No. What did I forget?
18. No!
19. No. I akready have my self confidence.
20. NO!

Oh no! 5 out of 20! I really have some problems!

Coloma's avatar

@Mimishu1995 Your only problem is you carry a machine gun. haha

Berserker's avatar

It was addicting before, not noes mores. That’s not a bad thing, not a Fluther basher. Just saying, that saying there, and this too shall pass, also applies to the positive. Like love, or your first cigar.
In fact it probably applies to the good even more than to the bad, because as we all know, good shit never lasts, as it is ephemeral. That’s prolly the only reason it is good. If bad shit was ephemeral, we would probably think it good, but then what do I know, it’s not like I’ve ever felt real, genuine soul shattering pain before, am I right?

Fluther became habit forming for me after the magic was gone, but it’s good habit, for the most part. It’s my online fireplace where I can feel warm and fuzzy, ain’t naught too bad boot dat shite, yeah?

Pachy's avatar

To quote Eliza Doolittle in “My Fair Lady”, “it’s a habit I can always break… and yet…”

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