Sunday, March 31, 2013

Daily Me

The entire time I read the first half of this article all I could do was shake my head and scream "No! No! No!" inside my head to myself. The idea of totally personalized media feed scared the bejesus out of me! I mean imagine it....a world where you only got what you wanted to hear/see/watch with no intrusion from the outside world. How incredibly dull and lame that would be! A cocoon of your own likes and interests to bore yourself to death. How would you ever learn anything or grow! How could you relay what you know to others who would have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. The ultra-niched world would have everyone so fragmented and isolated that I couldn't imagine how boring and useless even following media would become. For me, the exposure to new ideas and stories is WHY I read the news, not to avoid them. 
There is so much that's just fundamentally wrong with this idea of only consuming the media you want. So after my inner voice caught its breath from yelling, I realized that Cass Sunstein also saw the inherent flaws with the "Daily Me" type of media consumption. As she so aptly points out, exposure to new ideas facilitate and nurture democracy. In addition they give us all common experiences so we can relate to one another. If we were all in our own private bubbles with nothing to make us cringe or feel uneasy, what would be the point of living? It would seem like a bland Orwellian existence where we are fed our congee or gruel of media every day through a tube. We don't even take notice as we dumbly blink, swallow and digest the bare necessity of information. GULP!
It reminds me of the story of the fable about the emperor with no clothes. If you are surrounded by yes men telling you things you want to hear then you'll be tricked and fooled into believing just about anything. 

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