Social media is damaging your career

An argument for quitting social media to regain focus in your life.

Is it time for you to quit social media?

Cal Newport thinks it is. In fact, he says, "Your career may depend on it."

Cal is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Georgetown University.
Cal Newport
He recently wrote a piece for the New York Times, urging people to break up with their social media networks in order to succeed in their careers, which he admits "runs counter to our current understanding of social media's role in the professional sphere."

Cal's most recent book, Deep Work, argues that focus is the new I.Q. and  people who can concentrate without distraction will thrive.

Cal is a millennial and a computer scientist, yet he's never had a social media account. "As far I can tell, I'm the only one. The last of my generation," he says.

"I think people of my generation have been sold this story that social media is very important for your career. And I actually think that the harms of social media to your career are being underemphasized."

Cal says that you're deluding yourself if you think Twitter messages, posts and 'likes' are a productive use of your time. He argues that the distraction they cause is harmful, making us worse at focussing and being able to concentrate on difficult things.

He adds that if you're serious about making an impact in the world, forget social media and "roll up your sleeves and get to work."


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?