I Think I Have An Addiction Issue

Media

la-fg-north-korea-internet-outages-20141223-001

Well, that was unpleasant. No website for a week, and it taught me a lot. First, that we as a household have an addiction issue. If it wasn’t for our plethora of little screens it would look like we’ve been burgled – we own nothing, none of the junk they advertise on TV, just the bare minimum we need – and we need those screens.

They have become our default mode. We haven’t watched regular TV, the live-broadcast stuff with adverts in, for several years now. Everything is spotified, stored, streamed, hidden in the Cloud. I keep hard copies of music and some films because OSs change and things randomly vanish. My bookshelves are emptying as more and more volumes are transferred to my Kindles. I’m a Luddite’s worst nightmare, the not-quite-silver Silver Surfer who lives online, who’ll walk down the street staring at Google Maps rather than asking someone where to go.

My Christmas trip to France was spoiled because their broadband speed was slow. I love Eastern Europe because their internet connections are faster than the UK’s. The USA has some of the slowest broadband speeds on earth (although I imagine it’s not bad in Google HQ). This is because countries who came online later have faster speeds. In Britain we’re still using copper cable, for God’s sake.

Oh, you’re asleep, I’m sorry.

So a perfect storm brought down my site. The end of a ten-year domain licence, change of address, change of email, change of credit card, all meant that I couldn’t get hold of the licence holder. Was there an upside to the sudden blackout?

My God, yes. I got an extra two hours’ work a day done, at least. I felt more energised. But here’s the biggest thing; after four days I no longer cared that I was offline. Okay, not offline, without a site. I can’t actually imaging being totally offline, that would be like saying we went on holiday and there was nowhere to wash. And now I’m back and the yoke has been refastened around my neck, and I’ve made my choice between being happy and being free. And I’m happy.

13 comments on “I Think I Have An Addiction Issue”

  1. Mike Cane says:

    You’re a writer. Gotta write. Even in a blog. Welcome to The Addiction.

  2. Brooke says:

    Hasn’t it occurred to you that you are part of others’ addiction! Panic set in when I could not find a link to your blog–my doc has upped the dosage of my medication as a result.
    I read your blog by linking through Facebook. The amazon author’s page link is dysfunctional.
    Back to work, you.

  3. Vivienne says:

    Phew!

  4. agatha hamilton says:

    Welcome back! So pleased to see you.

  5. Jo W says:

    Welcome back,Chris! 🙂

  6. Ness says:

    If slow internet in France spoiled things for you, don’t come to Australia. Our hamsters are tired from all that wheel work they do to keep our internet running. I’ve had significantly faster speeds on a deserted hillside bus stop in Tuscany. Still, there’s always dead tree books to keep me amused.

  7. Rachel Green says:

    I love you for this post alone.

  8. Vincent C says:

    Welcome back from me too.

  9. Oddly I didn’t miss you at all. It’s true. I’ve been so busy working on websites. I haven’t been on Facebook at all. I’m sure my friends think I’ve died. But that said. I am glad to have a fresh dose of your kind self.

  10. Andy W. says:

    Thank you Chris – Normal Service Resumed At Last !
    I did think for a couple of days that London had caught up with the rest of the country –
    flood defences breached, no power for days, roads washed away,
    prime minsters promising loads of money for repair ….
    Stupid me, all is well in the Big Black Smoke !

  11. George Mealor says:

    First, I checked to internet for death notices, then I recalled that you were going on holiday. I then went back to reading to my wife.

  12. Wayne Mook says:

    Welcome back, seeing the website not found message was worrying. At least it was not the new 451 error, named after Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, denoting content that has been blocked for legal reasons – i.e. censorship. It did give me the to read other sites, such as the Ansible link which is where I saw the news of the error message.

    Maybe one day an error message will be named after your honour.

    I wasn’t too worried I checked the twitter feed and so on.

    Wayne.

  13. m says:

    The blog was missed. Glad you’re back.

Comments are closed.