glowing rectangle
n. A mocking or satiric reference to a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or computer screen.
There’s a business problem on the horizon here: the app economy, social networks, online publishers and others all have business models dependent on driving as many clicks as possible and keeping as many eyeballs as possible glued to small, glowing rectangles for as long as possible.
—Alex Dalenberg, “If the Web makes us miserable, is it possible to build products that don't?,” Upstart Business Journal, September 04, 2013
While I believe all of these apps are great learning tools, they are in no way a substitute for real-world learning. Indeed, children should learn about the world around them first-hand, not at the end of yet another glowing rectangle.
—Jonathan Deesing, “Educational apps the smart way to keep kids entertained,” Deseret News, July 12, 2012
2009 (earliest)
A new report published this week by researchers at Stanford University suggests that Americans spend the vast majority of each day staring at, interacting with, and deriving satisfaction from glowing rectangles.
Reverend Rambo is speaking from the pulpits of America and glaring from the glowing rectangle of religious media.
—Jack Sims, PR Newswire, April 01, 1986