Zan Boag is Editor of New Philosopher and Editorial Director of Womankind magazine – both of which are produced in Byron Shire and are distributed in over 20 countries. As an Ethics Coordinator with Primary Ethics, he helps promote critical thinking skills in children from a young age. Zan is also the Director of organic tea label poet tea and co-owner of independent bookstore poet, which features titles focusing on the environment, critical thinking, sociology, psychology, and poetry. He holds postgraduate qualifications in Environmental Science and Management.

Zan will be presenting ‘Amusing Ourselves to Death’; as part of the Humanity Renewal Program.

There’s little doubt that the media – from traditional to social media – influences who we are, how we think, and what we discuss. Simply put, it defines which topics and ideas are most important to us

However the problem is not simply that it influences us, but how we are influenced – and how much. The average Westerner spends over 11 hours a day – 70% of waking hours – in front of a screen. Children now consume 52 hours of media each week, six times more than the time they spend doing physical exercise. In short, the average man, woman, and child spends more time with media than doing any other activity, except perhaps sleeping. But how much we consume is only part of the picture – in all forms of media, entertainment rules over education, style over substance. Instead of focusing on matters of importance to us and to the livelihood of future generations we are, as media theorist Neil Postman put it, amusing ourselves to death.

In this talk Zan Boag will discuss the extent of media influence on our lives, positive developments, and the role of philosophy in finding solutions to the fundamental problems we face in contemporary society.