Feature

Buried under an avalanche of information

People living in the Information Age are not necessarily well-informed, said Dusty Horwitt in <em>The Washington Post.</em>

Dusty HorwittThe Washington Post

People living in the Information Age are not necessarily well-informed, said Dusty Horwitt. Americans now literally have “too much information,” with millions of websites, hundreds of TV channels, and our constantly chattering PDAs burying us under tons of irrelevant data and distracting fluff. When the amount of information at your fingertips is unlimited, how do you know what matters and what doesn’t? Newspapers and other major media used to help people sort things out, but their audiences are now being siphoned off and fragmented into innumerable tiny segments. The lack of a single public square poses a real problem for frustrated politicians and activists, who now find it difficult to reach broad audiences and build the consensus necessary to solve major problems. Today, competing against 100 million blogs for attention, an FDR would have a hard time selling the New Deal; “without broad media coverage, the civil-rights movement might never have succeeded.” When it comes to information, less is sometimes more.

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