Oct 14, 2008

Life In The Fishbowl

The explosive growth of media, much of it beyond the mainstream, raises some interesting questions that came to light in the past couple of weeks, in regards to the global financial crisis and subsequent stock market meltdown.

Namely, how much does the constant and persistent availability of information from various sources, all of whom are now trying to shout louder than ever, lead to the feeling that we're on a giant pendulum, swinging wildly from one extreme to the next.

One day every tweet, newspaper article, blog post, Facebook link, TV pundit, etc. seems to point to the next Great Depression. Or something even worse than the Great Depression.

And then, just as suddenly, stocks are up, we've hit bottom, Asia is following suit, who cares about Iceland and Happy Days Are Here Again.

There's an irrationality to the crowd mentality that seems to feed on itself. And the growing number of touchpoints we have seem to make it all the more urgent, all the more pressing.

And what I'm not sure of is whether this is just that all of us, who grew up before the explosion of new media, need to get used to this new environment, and just re-tune the way we listen and process the glut of information. Or whether it's a plague and the chorus of voices just leads to groupthink and avoids any sort of rational thought.

Curious what you all think about this.

And if you're in Toronto, don't forget to see me TODAY (Tuesday, 10.14.08) at the Media In Canada Forum

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