Daniel Radcliffe just finished a stint off-Broadway in Privacy, a play about the dangers of living our lives publicly. But the 27-year-old star got that advice early.
“I’m very lucky that I had a lot of people around me who encouraged me to actively try and work out who I was away from the media version of me,” the Harry Potter alum tells Metro about the adults on set who gave him guidance from the age of 10.
Besides valuing what little of his life he could keep to himself, Radcliffe points out that social media could also be hurting young people’s search for identity. “A lot of people who don’t have privacy find it hard to change and grow as a person because you’re doing that in full view of everyone, and that can be inhibiting because you’re viewing yourself through the lens of how people are perceiving you rather than what you want,” he says.
“We’re seeing more and more young people who are afraid of talking on the phone, and if you ask them about it they’ll say things like, ‘I’m scared of making a mistake.’ To me, that is a danger for conversation, we have to be able to talk to each other and f— up and make mistakes.”
Radcliffe has opted out of social media, and revealed at a recent talk about the play that he didn’t even have an email address until about three years ago — when he needed one to signup for a fantasy football (the American kind) account.
Besides his life choice to be a Luddite, there are also practical reasons why you won’t find him on Snapchat anytime soon. “There’s a bunch of reasons I’m not on Twitter and stuff, and part of it is that I’m f—ing lazy and I wouldn’t be able to respond to everyone, it would stress me out,” he says.
That said, there’s one group of people he wouldn’t mind bearing a bit more scrutiny. “[Regular people] should have more privacy, and the people in charge should have less,” he says. “Not in their personal lives but how things are done.
“One of the main problems at the moment is, we got to meet Sen. Ron Wyden through doing the play who asked [Director of National Intellegence] James Clapper the famous question, ‘Does the NSA collect data on hundreds of millions of Americans?’ to which he lied, not wittingly. He’s an amazing man, but we need many more people like him who are technologically savvy enough to ask the correct questions.”