The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked

Hardcover, 354 pages

English language

Published March 7, 2017 by Penguin Press.

OCLC Number:

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4 stars (2 reviews)

Welcome to the age of behavioral addiction—an age in which half of the American population is addicted to at least one behavior. We obsess over our emails, Instagram likes, and Facebook feeds; we binge on TV episodes and YouTube videos; we work longer hours each year; and we spend an average of three hours each day using our smartphones. Half of us would rather suffer a broken bone than a broken phone, and Millennial kids spend so much time in front of screens that they struggle to interact with real, live humans.

In this revolutionary book, Adam Alter, a professor of psychology and marketing at NYU, tracks the rise of behavioral addiction, and explains why so many of today's products are irresistible. Though these miraculous products melt the miles that separate people across the globe, their extraordinary and sometimes damaging magnetism is no accident. The companies that design these products …

1 edition

Review of 'Irresistible' on 'Storygraph'

4 stars

Good analysis of how some new technologies are addictive. It discusses the concepts of addition and how cues that are used in gambling environments (like casinos) are used in various technologies today to keep us hooked. That goes from cliffhangers at the end of a TV show episode to little rewards in a video game to notifications on our mobile devices.
The book mainly focuses on how we can be subjected to technology addiction but I missed more discussion of how can we protect ourselves from it.

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3 stars


  • Social aspects
  • Digital media
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychological aspects