The decline of thoughtful media has been discussed for a century. This is not new. What is new: A fundamental shift not just in the profit-seeking gatekeepers, but in the culture as a whole. This we must resist. post
The economics seem to be that the only way to make a living is to reach a lot of people and the only way to reach a lot of people is to race to the bottom, seek out quick clicks, make it easy to swallow, reinforce existing beliefs, keep it short, make it sort of fun, or prurient, or urgent, and most of all, dumb it down.
We can survive if we eat candy for an entire day, but if we put the greenmarkets out of business along the way, all that's left is candy.
It's easy to imagine a slippery slope down, but there's also the cultural ratchet, a positive function in which people race to learn more and understand more so they can keep up with those around them. If only a few people use precise words, employ thoughtful reasoning and ask difficult questions, it still forces those around them to catch up.
The hucksters learn the new ways first. But there are new ways for the thoughtful too, though probably not with incredible reach and insane profits.
Bret Victor, having followed the climate situation for some time, writes a “personal view”, biased by his experiences and idiosyncrasies, but still a treasure trove of relevant data, reasoned thought and skillful presentation. post