And Now, the Right to Disconnect

Leave it to the French to put a balance on things. Digital devices are wearing people out, so the French government is doing something about it. They’ve passed a law making it illegal for companies with more than 50 employees to contact their people after hours. This forced untethering is long overdue, considering how smartphones dominate so much of our lives, interrupting moments, fracturing conversations, and marginalizing face-to-face relationships. We’ve become addicted and, by definition, helpless to help ourselves.

Will this new law stick? Personally, I don’t think so. People want to be connected, it seems, beyond all reason. It’s more likely that the fear of missing some bit of information will be even greater than the stress of hearing the next ping in your pocket.

The cat’s out of the bag. Once connected, always connected. And like marriage, that’s for better or for worse.

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