The Binge Breaker, The Atlantic
Prompted by a never-ending stream of vibrating notifications, the average person checks their smartphone at least 150 times a day. As an alternative to severing all ties to technology, the advocacy group Time Well Spent, co-founded by former Google employee Tristan Harris, is working to convince software companies to find their conscience and halt the psychological tricks that keep us hooked on screen time.
When Reportage Turns to Cynicism, The New York Times
The media’s been blamed for paving Donald Trump’s path to the White House, with hours of free airtime during the primaries and false equivalences during the general election. But two reporters pinpoint another problem with the business: Journalism focuses too narrowly on what’s going wrong. If news organizations were to practice “solutions journalism” (like much of what you’ll find here at NationSwell) and share what’s working, we might place more faith in our institutions to fix problems.
Shuttered State Prisons Spring Back to Life, Stateline
As mass incarceration continues to decline, the nation’s correctional facilities are emptying out. What to do with 150 state prisons we no longer need? Some governments are flipping the properties over to businesses and nonprofits. In Illinois, two juvenile prisons will be converted to reentry centers for adult inmates, while in California, medical marijuana growers believe a lockup (once teeming with drug dealers) could make a perfect greenhouse.