The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

Shut It Down Day

I tried to do it last year, and just couldn’t. Now Shutdown Day is upon us again.

Shutdown Day is a Global Internet Experiment whose purpose is to get people to think about how their lives have changed with the increasing use of the home computer, and whether or not any good things are being lost because of this.

The idea of Shutdown Day project is simple – just shutdown your computer for one whole day of the year and involve yourself in some other activities: outdoors, nature, sports, fun stuff with friends and family – whatever, just to remind yourself that there still exists a world outside your monitor screen.

Michael Taylor, the original partner in the idea of Shutdown Day, says

“I certainly could not and would not want to live without my computer. However, I am often drawn into spending hours chatting on MSN, simply because my friends are online instead of socialising face to face. I am often too busy to cook a proper dinner, because I want to see the latest news on or the latest YouTube video. I know parents who are so addicted to the computer that they spend little time with their children, and I also know children who do not spend time with their parents because they are always using the computer. We are not preaching to anyone to turn off their computers. We are just suggesting that people might like to take part in this experiment, and see what happens.”


The funny thing is, the impact of the personal computer on my life has been pretty positive. I met my hubby online, after all. (I answered his ad. The rest, as they say, is history.) And one evening when we attended a “Maybe Baby” discussion group for gay men considering parenthood, the social worker who was the speaker for the evening handed out a copy of Adoptive Families magazine. That evening, I went home, sat down with the magazine, and looked at the website of every agency with an ad in the magazine. I ended up finding the agency that helped us adopt Parkr and Dylan.

Besides, with an active five-year-old and a healthy four-month-old in the house, I barely have time to be computer all that much. (Unless the hubby takes Parker out and Dylan happen to go down for a nap.)

Still, it’ll be relatively easy to shutdown the computer — computers, since we’re talking about the MacBook, the Mac Mini, and the PC. (And, yes, sometimes they’re all on at the same time.) The whole family will be at the Rainbow Families DC conference today. All day. I’m also speaking on a panel.

So, does it count if I’m not going to be near the computer tomorrow anyway? (Or does it count if I wrote this post last night )

Now, if I could just shut it down and sleep for the whole day…


  1. This is not good news for bloggers participating in that Blog365 thingey. 🙂

  2. We’ll actually be out and about with friends that day, so we might be able to accomplish this. Otherwise, it would be tough. 🙂