2014 Schedule
Interactive: March 7–11  •  Film: March 7–15  •  Music: March 11–16

Offline: Navigating Constant Connectivity

#sxsw #SXOffline


The Internet can be the voice of a revolution, a community for kindred spirits and a bridge that spans the global divide. At times it can be transcendent, a vast network of global knowledge and human connectivity, and at times it can be a bottomless chasm of vapid conversation and superficial engagement.
In May of 2012, Paul Miller left the internet. Worried that it had made him unproductive, that it lacked meaning and even 'corrupted his soul,' he unplugged. During his year offline, he embarked on a journey of self-discovery, documenting his experiences and thoughts.
Does logging off allow us a return to Eden? Does it offer a glimpse at a simpler, more meaningful life? Or when we leave, do we find that the burdens of distractions were with us all along?
Join the Human conversation about the boundaries we must create for the network that binds us together and drives us apart.



Mordechai Lightstone

Dir of Social Media

Chabad Lubavitch Headquarters

Mordechai Lightstone is a rabbi by training, a journalist by profession and a blogger by choice. He has served as assistant rabbi in diverse communities including Poland, Lithuania, Italy and Peru. He is passionate about using new media to further Jewish identity and community building. He currently resides in pre-hipster Brooklyn, where he seeks to bring Jews together around technological innovation and leadership and serves as Director of Social Media and Features Editor for Lubavitch.com, the official website for Chabad-Lubavitch World Headquarters.

Paul Miller

Sr Editor

The Verge

Paul spent a year without using the internet, from May 2012 to May 2013. He wrote about his experiences for The Verge, a technology and culture site he helped co-found, and where he worked as a Senior Editor while disconnected. He's now spending some more time off the grid (though not offline) to work on a book about his experiences, but one day hopes to make a full-fledged return to society.

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