Inflammatory Illo masks insightful argument. Link

Ignore the outrageous illo–read the article!

This may belong in Great Debates.

Is the author right?
Has information validity gone out the window for most of us?

What’s an illo? And no, I think the author is incorrect in his assumption. People were just as idiotic before the internet as they are now.

An illo is an illustration.


It’s a crackpot idea published by a crackpot magazine, what else would you expect?

That’ll be a dollar, as always.

I’ll give you another buck if you tell me why it’s not called an “illu.” Would seem to make more sense.

It’s similar to the reason for the names Robert, William, and Richard being abbreviated Bob, Bill, and Dick.

I dunno.

I’ve been saying this for nearly as long as the series of tubes have been around.

Back in the day, you swung by the library, went to the nonfiction section, and you could be reasonably sure what was there wasn’t complete crap. Yeah, there was that chance and many details could be white washed, what you needed might not be there…and so on and so on.

Now, the “library”, aka the internet, there is tons of shit about everything imaginable. But NOW, the probability of it being remotely accurate IMO is pretty low.

If you have a decent BS filter and you know what you are looking for, the internet can be great. Otherwise, not so much IMO.

Unspoken premise: TPTB have a level of expertise in managing information the rest of us dumb drones could never hope to achieve, and they have our best interests at heart, therefore whatever they tell us must be true.

Missing corollary: Genuinely unreal or false information was classified as true. Take, as one example off the top of my head, the case of the Scottsboro Boys in the 1930s. Nine young Black men falsely accused of rape, and yet the mass media blared their guilt as if it were established fact even before the trial was completed.

Information validity has not gone out the window. The filters (i.e. critical thinking) are still available and usable by anyone who chooses to. The sheer volume of information available thanks to the Internet may have increased and the signal-to-noise ratio may have declined relatively as a result, but that doesn’t mean we’re no longer able to sift through it, think things over, and determine validity. In fact, I’d argue that critical thinking is more relevant than ever for the masses, considering TPTB will consciously lie in order to attain its goals - the words ‘Iraq war’ should require no further elaboration here.

OK, now that I’ve offered my thoughts, I’ll take a peek at the illo… oh, F$CK that guy right in the ear.

Soooo … the crux of his argument is that tabloids, yellow journalism, widespread rumours, misinformation, propaganda, and the like either didn’t exist or had no statistically significant effect on the public consciousness before the Internet because the “truth” was only allowed to be widely disseminated by the responsible, upstanding, and irreproachable mainstream media, thus resulting in a more sensible, informed and right-thinking society?

I’m sure if they were alive today, Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst would agree.