Jillian C. York

Jillian C. York is a writer and activist.

Internet Sabbatical

Starting tomorrow, I am doing something that I have never definitively done: I am taking an Internet sabbatical for one full week.

I’m very fortunate: I travel quite a bit for conferences and speaking engagements, and when I do, I often manage to book an extra day or two for sightseeing.  During those brief periods, I often skip out on the Internet.  When I visit my parents, I sometimes skip out for a day or so (though with parents like mine, sometimes we all just sit around on our laptops).  And once in awhile, at home in Cambridge, I’ll take a one-day Internet break.  The only time in about 5 years I’ve taken a week off was during my 2009 trip to Syria, and it was delightful.

I can’t take the kind of digital sabbatical that danah boyd and gwen bell talk about: an entire month or more, free from emails, journalists, and other communications, nor am I sure I want or need to.  But everyone could use a little time away, and so that’s what I’m getting.

And so, next week I will be traveling, Internet-free, while a friend stays at my place.  I will be taking photographs, eating beautiful meals, driving a rented Prius, swimming!, reading (Evgeny Morozov’s new book and hopefully countless novels), drinking copious amounts of wine, and best of all…relaxing (well, in so far as I can relax, anyway: I’m an early bird whose idea of relaxing is 5-hour-long urban walks).

So, enjoy your holidays as I will be enjoying mine, and have a wonderful new year!  And if you need me, I suggest sending an email on January 2, when you can be sure it’ll hit the top of my inbox :)

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  1. Enjoy your sabbatical.
    Best wishes from Peru!

  2. Enjoy the sabbatical and let us know how it felt!
    Merry Christmas and a wishes for a peaceful, happy New Year filled with excitement and good health :-)

  3. Once a radical, always a radical!

    How dare you be so extreme?

    Welcome to 2011, a year to celebrate surviving the awfulness of the noughties and moving onwards and upwards.

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