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Irresistible

Why We Can't Stop Checking, Scrolling, Clicking and Watching
Narrated by: Adam Alter
Length: 8 hrs and 17 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (117 ratings)

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Summary

How many times have you checked your phone today? Why are messaging apps, email and social media so hard to resist? How come we always end up watching another episode?

In recent years, media and technology have perfected the lucrative art of gaining and holding our attention. This extraordinary feat has changed the behaviour of billions of people, and especially the young: by current medical standards, we are experiencing an unprecedented global pandemic of addiction. But what exactly is an addiction? And what, if anything, might we do about it?

From cliff-hangers to earworms, from religion to pornography, and from the awesome allure of the Kim Kardashian: Hollywood app to the unexpected benefits of the 'butt-brush effect', Irresistible blends fascinating stories with ingenious science to explain how and why we all got hooked. Revealing the surprising causes and sometimes bizarre nature of addiction, this book will equip you with the tools and understanding you need to navigate our irresistible new world.

©2017 Adam Alter (P)2017 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

"Truly addictive." (Malcolm Gladwell)
"Brilliant." (Susan Cain)
"Essential." (Charles Duhigg)

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

We are all addicted to something - and somebody else gets paid for it

Important book for everyone to listen to or read about how addiction can creep up on us in the modern world and how someone is normally profiting from it.

Although the material is not new or original, book is written and read well.

It's not against tech and modern digital life but makes case for us remembering it is just a tool available to us humans

3 people found this helpful

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Fascinating listen

Very engaging. Well written. Good performance in terms of the reading. The examples and the arguments had me paying attention all the way through.

1 person found this helpful

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Thought provoking

There were certain chapters in this book that had me really interested and focused. However, there were a few chapters in which I could have given up. Overall I am glad I listened, I particularly found the psychological impacts of tech use really interesting, especially when talking about iPads, Social skills and consequences kids using loads of tech will have. Overall I wanted more of this, more discussions about how Instagram, constant filtering etc is having on people’s mental health.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

very interesting topic

very interesting and thought provoking but took me a while to finish. so jam packed with info and research and facts is a lot to take in in one go. overall would recommend

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Extremely eye opening

I would highly recommend this audio book. I enjoyed Alter’s delivery and investment into his work. It is a strong mix of research, real world examples and personal accounts. I was struck by Alter’s disclosure of his own tendencies to become addicted to tech.

As well as providing a commentary on how addiction is built into social media and gaming, and the social implications of that, he provides a solid introduction to behavioural addiction in general - both its mechanisms and also how the understanding of it evolved over time.