information & intelligence

I was surfing the blogosphere looking at articles on beef when I had an epiphany about how cheap information has become. It used to be important when I encountered a rare idea or a beautiful factoid. If I read something about the exotic mating habits of lobsters, I could put it into the mouth a character in a play to make them sound smart and inspired. The knowledge felt precious, because I had reaped the benefits from a scientists' journey to discover something obscure.

....And now? Fergetaboutit. Everyone knows a whole lot of obscure shit. I'll see your story about dog sperm with my anecdote about soy products. I read about it on the Internet. If you want the information I'll send you the link. And even though the levels of misinformation and ad-campaigns-disguised-as-information have ballooned to the point of nearly drowning out all useful knowledge on the web, the delivery systems have improved so that we now have constant, high-speed access to all this whatever. So it's easier to know, but harder than ever to care.

....And I know this to be empirically absolutely incorruptibly true, because I used to work for a search engine.

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