Information, or not

Ours is called “The Information Age.” The internet has put works of literature, history, art, science and more at our fingertips. I suspect many of us use this for trivial purposes, such as seeing what other films an actor appeared in. This is a benign, but fairly trivial exercise of which I am guilty.

Far too many also use the internet to confirm what they already believe. While avoiding contrary opinions can limit one’s understanding, it is also fairly benign as long as you stay within the factual and rational universe.

It’s another matter when confirming our beliefs leads, step-by-step, into increasingly fact-free zones.

In these zones, COVID-19 vaccines are made of fetal tissue, or are a pretext for Bill Gates to inject us with microchips. Out in those zones, the seemingly benevolent Tom Hanks is actually part of a global pedophile ring that drinks the blood of babies, and a national election was stolen by a conspiracy involving a dead South American dictator, Italian satellites, the Chinese government and Republican officials.

As all of these ideas are patently false, yet believed by millions, perhaps we should call this “The Misinformation Age.”

William Appel


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