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Virtually You
The Dangerous Powers of the E-Personality
Elias Aboujaoude
read on November 1, 2012

Really not to much to say about this book - I don't think it covered anything I wasn't already pretty familiar with. It was really slow moving, and actually sort of boring. The main idea is more or less how the internet can foster a kind of multiple personality disorder among some people, where you have an internet persona that is distinctly different than your actual personality, and how those behaviors can be really bad for you.

I'm not very interested in how people act online - whether they gamble more, are more hostile, or more prone to lie, or whatever. For me, what's interesting about internet behavior was all pretty well covered in "The Shallows", which had to do with how the format of the internet changes our brain chemistry, and changes our offline thought processes as well. Again, this book did touch on that, but it just really didn't feel put together well. Maybe if a good editor chopped of 30% of the cruft I'd have felt a lot better about it, but as it stands it just really isn't up to par with its competition.

Cool cover though.

Author Bio:

Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Director, OCD Clinic; author (Virtually You: The Dangerous Powers of the e-Personality, Compulsive Acts: A Psychiatrist's Tales of Ritual and Obsession, Mental Health in the Digital Age: Grave Dangers, Great Promise, Impulse Control Disorders).