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You are what you stare at: How screen time impacts our behaviors IRL

"The Smarter Screen" by Shlomo Benartzi
Penguin Random House

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People spend many hours staring at screens. Between smartphones, laptops and smartwatches, the impact that all of this technology has had on everyday life is clear.

What’s less obvious, according to behavioral economist Shlomo Benartzi, is the visual biases and behavioral patterns that influence that people’s thinking when we’re using all of these screens.

In his new book “The Smarter Screen: Surprising Ways to Influence and Improve Online Behavior,” Benartzi describes the little ways that our technology affects our decision-making. This includes everything from how we read e-books to the things that we purchase from our phones.

How much are we really paying attention to the things that come across our phones? Which company websites are the biggest culprits when it comes to disengaging viewers? What needs to change to help us make better decisions through our screens?


Shlomo Benartzi, author of “The Smarter Screen: Surprising Ways to Influence and Improve Online Behavior,”(Portfolio/Penguin Books 2015). He is a professor and co-chair of the Behavioral Decision Making Group at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management. He tweets at @ShlomoBenartzi