Episode available within Canada only. Video help?

One thing is certain about human nature...we're born talkers.   Our urge to communicate is universal. And now with modern technology we can meet anybody… anywhere… at anytime.

Today our means for communication are endless: twelve billion text messages are sent worldwide every day. Thirteen million Canadians are Facebook users.  And the number of personal computers in use around the globe is expected to double in the next four years.  But is all this access to technology actually making our lives better?

Are We Digital Dummies? takes a hard look at how computers and the latest cell phone technology affect our families and our co-workers in addition to our own lives.

"I don't think I've met a single person who says they're happy managing the technology pace," says Tod Maffin, a Canadian expert on technology use.  "One of the problems with living in an 'always on' society is we perceive the need to always be on."

Canadians interviewed for the film say they now can't live without their personal devices.  But they also complained that computers and especially smart phones like the BlackBerry have taken over their lives and they worry about how much time they're spending surfing the internet. And it is not just for personal use. Many of us have careers that depend on us being able to be reached at any time on any day no matter where we are.

In this provocative, fast paced, funny and shocking documentary,  Are We Digital Dummies? examines the risks associated with using our tech gear behind the wheel of the car, at home, as well as at the office where cell phone use in meetings have re-written the rules of etiquette. We discover that there is growing concern that our technology use has turned us into a distracted nation. That the emphasis is shifting from deep thinking to getting superficial knowledge fast and that despite what we think, we're not very good at multi-tasking with all those devices.  Our brains simply can't keep up with all the modern demands for our attention.

But some people can't turn off their technology. They need to immediately read that next text, take that call or check their Facebook. Experts interviewed at an internet addiction centre in Washington State say that between six to ten per cent of the population that's online meets criteria for internet addiction.

Are We Digital Dummies? takes measure of how technology devices are affecting our personal lives both for the good and the bad, and leaves us with an important question: Can we manage the technology around us or will we let it manage us?  

Are We Digital Dummies? is produced by Merit Motion Pictures and directed by Andy Blicq.

Also on CBC