You Can Now Officially Take A Course In "Wasting Time On The Internet"
"But I'm already doing it for free!"
If you're still deciding on what to study post high school, look no further. The University of Pennsylvania is now offering a course in "Wasting time on the Internet".
Next semester, students at the University of Pennsylvania will have the option to enroll in a course that requires them to do what young people do best: waste hours and hours online. Per the description of the Ivy League English course, officially titled “Wasting time on the Internet,” students will be asked to find meaning in the time they spend alone with a computer:yahoo.com
You already spend a significant chunk of your day wasting time on the internet, so why not pay thousands of dollars and earn college credit for it?nymag.com
In this course, being "distracted, aimless, and the ability to multitask is mandatory"
The University of Pennsylvania, an Ivy League school, will begin offering a creative writing class titled, “Wasting Time on the Internet,” in which “distraction, multitasking, and aimless drifting is mandatory.”washingtontimes.com
The course will be offered next semester through the University of Pennsylvania’s English Department, where students will attempt to track their activities over three hours of digital time-wasting in order to produce a piece of creative writing.bdcwire.com
The required materials for the class is just a working laptop and a WiFi connection. Any printed material that may distract a student from wasting time is prohibited.
Required materials for the class, called “Wasting time on the Internet,” include a laptop and a Wi-Fi connection but notably exclude any printed material that might distract students from their mandated allotment of time-wasting. “Students will be required to stare at the screen for three hours, only interacting through chat rooms, bots, social media and listservs,” according to the course description on the university’s website, first spotted by Vice Motherboard.time.com
The class professor, Kenneth Goldsmith believes that the notion that the Internet makes people dumb, is dumb and wants to prove that it makes people smarter instead
I’m very tired of reading articles in the New York Times every week that make us feel bad about spending so much time on the internet, about dividing our attention so many times,” Kenneth Goldsmith, a world-renowned poet and the course’s professor, told me. “I think it’s complete bullshit that the internet is making us dumber. I think the internet is making us smarter. There’s this new morality built around guilt and shame in the digital age.”bdcwire.com
Furthermore, he wants to turn prospective student's social media posts into meaningful works of art
The higher purpose of the course is to shape the detritus of the Internet into meaningful works of art. As the description asks prospective students: “Could we reconstruct our autobiography using only Facebook? Could we write a great novella by plundering our Twitter feed?” Those are big questions for some of the nation’s best and brightest, who will begin to answer them this coming spring.time.com
But Goldsmith believes there are real benefits to Internet time-wasting. He suggests that when attempting to create a work of art, the mindless scrolling and multitasking over multiple devices could allow our brains to tap into its creative subconscious and produce a work of art while in an electro-meditative state.bdcwire.com
We’re trying to wrench an artistic product out of that state of distraction that’s naturally created by talking on the phone with someone and surfing the internet at the same time, or by watching a video and chatting,” he said. “That’s the desired state in the class—even half being there is too generous. I want their attention across tablets, phones, screens, music. I want it divided many, many times.”bdcwire.com
But the question is, would you pay thousands of dollars for something you're already doing for free?