Conceptualizing Digital Addiction as Glutamine Inhibition and Glutamate Acceleration (GIGA): Considering the Links Between Productivity Slow-Down, Wakefulness, and Workfulness

Conceptualizing Digital Addiction as Glutamine Inhibition and Glutamate Acceleration (GIGA): Considering the Links Between Productivity Slow-Down, Wakefulness, and Workfulness

Jonathan Bishop (Crocels Community Media Group, UK)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 27
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-8449-0.ch004
OnDemand PDF Download:
No Current Special Offers


This chapter carries out two investigations into digital addiction using the brain productivity measure of knol. It is asserted that digital addiction is caused by two medical conditions linked to the well-known concept of flow and lesser known concept of involvement. These conditions are serotonergic-dopaminergic asynchronicity (SDA) and glutamine inhibition and glutamate acceleration (GIGA). In online environments SDA affects befriending, defriending and kudos and GIGA affects workfulness and smart-device overuse to produce increased wakefulness, causing conditions like Circadian rhythm sleep disorder. In other words, if a person is over-stimulated or under-stimulated, their use of digital technologies, such as at night, will increase. The results show improved sleep and reduced device use during the night when the L-Glutamine is consumed, but effects the following day were not always positive. L-5-Hydroxytryptophan had some effect in reducing ‘mental gaze' caused by glutamate and dopamine, but could not be seen as effective as an SSRI.
Chapter Preview

Discussing Productivity Slow-Down, Wakefulness, And Workfulness

If the world were like it was prior to human beings developing the level of intelligence that it could be possible for everyone to live in bricked housing with curtains and work in offices with poor lighting, the author asserts they could be happier as they would be more exposed to the sun. The advantage of exposure to the sun increases vitamin D through the skin (Holick, 2017), optimal serotonin levels (Patrick & Ames, 2015), and as a result they would also be more motivated. It is asserted that dysregulation in serotonin along with dopamine can increase productivity slow-down, decrease wakefulness and reduce workfulness. Productivity slow-down was originally used as a term to describe the recessions of the 20th century (Baily, Gordon, & Solow, 1981; Kendrick, 1971). However, in the context of this paper it refers to an individual person going from feeling they are able to engage in high volumes of work to only producing low volumes. Wakefulness refers to the extent to which a person is awake and able to concentrate on a task and workfulness refers to the extent to which a person wishes to work over performing some other activity.

Through using the ecological cognition framework (Bishop, 2007a; Bishop, 2007b; Bishop, 2009a) and combining and extending equations derived from it (Bishop, 2011; Bishop & Goode, 2014; Bishop, 2013), this chapter produces a parametric user model that can understand humans from both psychological and physiological levels. In particular, it is asserted that this model can help measure the extent to which a person’s competencies are limited by mind and body, known to be an important factor in developing information systems (Mantovani, 1996; Mantovani & Giuseppe, 1996).

Internet trolling has been cited as a growing problem as more people take to the Internet to exercise free speech and its links with digital addiction have been explored (Kopecký, 2016). The existence of widely available online communities, whether as part of social networking services like Facebook or smaller independent platforms resembling bulletin board services may be factor. The term ‘trolling’ once meant to post provocative messages for humorous effect but has since come to mean the posting of any messages with the intention of inciting offence in others (Jansen, E. & James, 1995; Jansen & Erin, 2002).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Social Orientation Impairment: A condition such as autism, empathism, demotism, psychoticism, neuroticism that means a person is not able to optimally engage with their environment.

Knol (K): A unit for measuring brain productivity. In most people the optimal knol is 0.81.

Digital Addiction: Digital addiction reflects that people compulsively use technology as a means to distract themselves from an unwanted situation. They may otherwise use cigarettes, alcohol, or similar.

Glutaminergic Inhibition and Glutamatergic Acceleration (Giga): A condition that can result from digital addiction, such as use of mobile phones at night, due to the overproduction of glumtamine and glutamate.

Serotonergic-Dopaminergic Asynchronicity (SDA): A condition resulting from sub-optimisation of the prefrontal cortex that can result in dysregulation in dopamine and serotonin leading to social orientation impairments.

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book: