When you ask Millennials to describe the doorbell, a surprising number use phrases like “panic-inducing,” “hateful” and “terrifying.” Sound overblown? It turns out many millennials see the doorbell as an unwanted intrusion much like a phone call during dinner from an 800 number. Friends or family don’t show up unannounced and ring the doorbell. They send a text or Whatsapp message. As author Jean Twinge explores in The Atlantic this week, this reliance on smartphones may bring the unintended side effect of losing the opportunity for serendipitous social interaction with strangers.
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