Ina Fried

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Alanis Morissette on When to Use Technology and When to Turn Off

The question of how much technology is too much is a common one, and one with which singer Alanis Morissette says she, too, struggles.

Photo: Hubert Burda Media

“I let it in to the degree that I find it helpful for me, so the degree to which technology allows me and my nervous system to rest after a huge day,” Morissette told AllThingsD on Thursday, following a speech at the DLDWomen conference in Munich. “But you know, not overloading.”

So you don’t have a phone with you all the time, constantly?

“No, I do,” she said. “We’ve had a lot of debates in the neurobiological community about how much technology (is good).

“Everybody is really down on technology, but I think there is a way to frame it where it actually fosters connectivity, as long as it doesn’t replace the face to face, tactile touch aspect of life.”

Morissette said she does post to Instagram and Twitter for a couple minutes, for example, after a concert. She also allows her 18-month-old child, Ever, access to technology, in small doses.

“I’ll allow a little bit in for my child that’s appropriate viewing, that’s kind of fun and whimsical,” Morissette said.

Morissette was a surprise addition to the DLDWomen lineup, taking the stage earlier in the day on Thursday, following a video shoot in Berlin.

Morissette encouraged the group of women from around the world to embrace their power as leaders.

“A lot of us are alpha women,” Morissette said. “For a long time, a lot of us would have been burned at the stake … or had our heads chopped off.”

These days, though, roles are changing for both men and women. She urged the crowd to embrace that change. Morissette said her husband is still providing for her, though at the moment, he was providing by taking care of Ever so that she could be at the conference.

“In days of old, they would bring home the veggie bacon,” said Morissette, a vegan.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald