A Dark Consensus About Screens and Kids Begins to Emerge in Silicon Valley
SAN FRANCISCO — The people who are closest to a thing are often the most wary of it. Technologists know how phones really work, and many have decided they don’t want their own children anywhere near them. A wariness that has been slowly brewing is turning into a regionwide consensus: The benefits of screens as a learning tool are overblown, and the risks for addiction and stunting development seem high. The debate in Silicon Valley now is about how much exposure to phones is O.K. “Doing no screen time is almost easier than doing a little,” said Kristin Stecher, a former social computing researcher married to a Facebook engineer. “If my kids do get it at all, they just want it more.” Ms. Recently she has softened this approach. There is a looming issue Ms. “We’ll cross that when we come to it,” said Ms. Some of the people who built video programs are now horrified by how many places a child can now watch a video. Ms. “We thought we could control it,” Mr. “This is scar tissue talking.
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