Mention Deficit Disorder

It’s nice to be mentioned – at least in a positive way.

Granted, some of us are more easily prone to enjoy flattery and attention than others. A lot depends on childhood experiences, genetics, personality.

Today’s media make it easier than ever to publicly mention someone and have them receive it – instantly.

Twitter epitomizes this: it has brought forth the mention-economy. People love to be Retweeted and Replied to. At least a substantial majority do.

This mention-economics can be a good thing: it can enable new connections, enhance existing social ties and produce a sense of ambient intimacy.

But what happens when the mentions become habit-forming?

What happens if the mentions stop – or if the mentions aren’t enough?

What happens when people feel as though they aren’t getting the mentions they want?

What happens when they reach a mention-deficit?

Do they develop a strange condition? A Mention Deficit Disorder?

I don’t know – it’s kind of a silly way to put things. But I suspect this Web stuff – to some degree – can create what I’ve called Inadvertent Narcissism.

Perhaps what we’re entering isn’t so much an Attention Economy. Perhaps what we’re entering is more of an Attention MEconomy. An economy that has to constantly seek out new ways of engaging and mentioning.

The problem, though, is that people can handle so much stimulation – overstimulate the senses and snap!…the system crashes.

That’s what happens with Attention Deficit Disorder (supposedly) – overstimulate the hyperactive brain and paradoxically calm it down.

Now that many corporations are waking up to social media, they will now realize what they’ve signed up for: finding ways of treating Mention Deficit Disorder without shutting down the attention economy.



0 Replies to “Mention Deficit Disorder”

  1. Well per Dale Carnegie — a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language, right? I agree, narcissistic personalities, sometimes narcissists, and non-narcissists, we all like our name mentioned. Will that lead to a mention addiction and subsequent “mention deficit” somehow similarly to ADHD? I have no idea. But I sense, it’s the true narcissists, not these inadverdent narcissists you describe, that may be prone to this type of deficit, much like some are prone to fame addiction.

    1. Hi Erica

      Yes, I’d agree with you re: narcissists.

      Nonetheless, I do wonder what the long-term trend is headed. Right now, it’s speculative.

      But I would like to see research. For example: in this regard, how do these media change personalities (even if slightly). Hard to tell for sure by gut alone.

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