Welcome to the 52nd episode of the Mediatwits podcast, with Mark Glaser and Rafat Ali as co-hosts. This week we have a special edition of the podcast dedicated to unplugging and taking breaks from media and technology. We are immersed in a world of technology, with smartphones at our fingertips, texts and status updates waiting for us at all times, and work that’s increasingly difficult to leave behind. As part of this week’s Unplug 2012 special report, this podcast includes an in-depth discussion on ways to unplug and detox.

Our special guests are William Powers, author of the book “Hamlet’s Blackberry”; Tanya Schevitz, communications manager for Reboot; and Levi Felix, who runs the Digital Detox retreat. They have various strategies for achieving balance with hectic work schedules and taking breaks and enjoying life. Tanya also helps run the National Day of Unplugging in March.

Check it out!


Subscribe to the podcast here

Subscribe to Mediatwits via iTunes

Follow @TheMediatwits on Twitter here

Our show is now on Stitcher! Listen to us on your iPhone, Android Phone, Kindle Fire and other devices with Stitcher. Find Stitcher in your app store or at stitcher.com.

Intro and outro music by 3 Feet Up; mid-podcast music by Autumn Eyes via Mevio’s Music Alley.

i-e527c0eec4ba7debe0ddd28bf3168a37-bill powers.jpg
William Powers

Here are some highlighted topics from the show:


0:30: Mark is off to get a kidney transplant

1:10: Rafat is working on getting angel funding for his new startup

4:00: Rafat: A blog is a beast you always need to feed, plus there’s social media

6:00: How Mark will disconnect post-transplant

Unplugging from media and technology

7:30: Special guests William Powers, Tanya Schevitz, Levi Felix

i-73a350b51bf6f7f6dba0fab8fd6b90cd-Tanya head shot 2012.jpg
Tanya Schevitz

10:20: Powers spending more time with technology because of the book, ironically

13:10: Schevitz: Sabbath Manifesto is about taking breaks from technology

16:15: Felix: Are we archiving our lives for ourselves or for other people?

19:00: Felix: That weird sensation when you feel a vibrating cell phone that’s not there

21:10: Schevitz ran a party at SXSW where everyone put their phones in sleeping bags

24:10: Has tech etiquette improved at all?

Levi Felix

27:00: Powers: There are plenty of historical precedents of people feeling overwhelmed by tech

31:10: Felix: Great value in taking time each day to reflect

More Reading

Hamlet’s Blackberry at Amazon

Digital Detox Retreat

Why We Need a Technology Sabbath at MediaShift by Tanya Schevitz

5 Tips to Prevent Digital Burnout and Maintain Good Mental Health at MediaShift

Special Series: Unplug 2012 at MediaShift

i-701a1831383aa801727595739f2135a5-hamlets blackberry.jpg

Sabbath Manifesto’s Unplug Challenge

LeaveYourPhoneBehind.com from Rafat Ali

Remember the Sabbath? at the Guardian

PKD Foundation website

Weekly Poll

Don’t forget to vote in our weekly poll, this time about how often you unplug from technology:

Mark Glaser is executive editor of MediaShift and Idea Lab. He also writes the bi-weekly OPA Intelligence Report email newsletter for the Online Publishers Association. He lives in San Francisco with his son Julian. You can follow him on Twitter @mediatwit. and Circle him on Google+