1. Your browsing history might reveal more of you than you’d care to admit.
You can pretty much find anything online if you know where to look for it and in most cases it will show up in your browser history afterwards. Of course there’s the incognito mode but how often do you actually make use of it on your private devices? This nervous sensation you experience when someone else is using your browser (I bet women experience the same when someone’s rummaging around their purse) might be a sign you spend too much time on the internet.
2. You know what a “meme” is.
If you perform a Google Trends search for the word “meme” you’ll see that this expression only really took off in 2011. So although this creates the impression of “meme” being rather new, it has actually been around for quite a while. With “gene” standing for a biochemical self-replicating unit, evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins once looked for an expression describing a self-replicating unit in cultural evolution: the “meme”. This was in 1976. The more you know! I just saved you a Wikipedia search. You’re welcome. Anyway, if you not only know of the word meme, but also know what it stands for and from where it originated, this might be a sign you are too involved with the internet.
3. You immediately know of an appropriate meme that matches a specific situation.
Memes, able to transmit all kinds of moods with often a single picture, are the logical advancement from emoticons. If you have found yourself at least once in a situation where you immediately knew of an appropriate meme to express your current state of mind, it might be a sign you are too involved with the internet.
4. Losing a non-secured device equals a disaster
Here’s a little story: 2 years ago I was flying from New York to Los Angeles. After I checked into my hotel room it hit me: I left my backpack in the taxi with my passport, my laptop, my tablet and other more or less important things in it. 30 minutes, a couple of phone calls and a mental breakdown later I was by some miracle reunited with my backpack and all my belongings. I had never lost anything in my life so I was naive enough to not secure my tablet or phone with some kind of password or lock pattern (fun fact: since that incident my lock pattern is so complex I’m not able to check my phone before I had my first cup of coffee). If someone else but me was curious enough to check out my tablet they would’ve had access to several cloud storages, to my Facebook and other social networks and my browser which has nearly all my passwords saved. What an incredible convenient yet unbelievable careless feature! If nothing else but a lock pattern stands between you and a personal disaster that might be a sign you are too involved with the internet.
5. You own a tablet PC.
Seriously, there’s no 100% rational explanation for owning a tablet. It doesn’t beat a laptop or a desktop PC in working efficiency and it offers nothing you can’t do with a smartphone instead. The most common explanation I hear for owning a tablet is the one where everyone argues it’s easier to surf the web while travelling or relaxing at home… and I get it! I own two of those things and yes that’s definitely a sign I spend too much time on the Internet.
6. You check your phone for updates even though it didn’t ring.
When was the last time you checked if someone was at your door even if nobody knocked on it or rang the bell? If you constantly check your phone for updates without any particular reason it might be a sign you’re too involved with the internet.
7. You’re in serious shock if you learn a friend who’s moved recently still has no Wi-Fi.
A few months ago a friend moved into a new apartment. She told me she won’t be having access to the Internet for at least two more months. I found that seriously jaw-dropping and also a bit outrageous. If you share that kind of sentiment, it’s a sign the two of us are spending too much time on the Internet.
8. You actually don’t really need to google everything.
We all google stuff. That’s why Google has gotten so huge and that’s also why Google is still growing. However, most of the things you do on a daily basis really don’t need to be googled. Just think about it real quick. Looking for humorous distraction? You know the site serving your kind of humor. Thirsting for knowledge? Wikipedia it is! Feeling the desire to see someone burping the alphabet? Off to YouTube! Easily 80% of your every-day online activity doesn’t need to be googled because you already know your way around and that might be a sign that you’re spending too much time on the Internet.
9. Without access to the Internet you entertainment’s gone.
YouTube, Netflix, Spotify… you name them. Awesome services which render buying DVDs and CDs moot. When being offline means you have no kind of entertainment left, then that’s a sign you are too involved with the internet.