Saturday October 25, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
19o C
12o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Logged out of reality

By Alexis Papachelas

It is a global phenomenon, and we have yet to fully grasp its implications for democracy and the functionality of Western states. The Internet is a bottomless well of information and a vast forum where different ideas are endlessly being exchanged. The anarchic nature of cyberspace is one of its biggest attractions and, many people hold, it expands the limits of our democracy because it gives a say to every individual.

The problem of course lies with the thoughtless, no-filter reproduction of misguided, extreme stories that influence the beliefs and the attitudes of large numbers of people. Some dodgy website in Americas South posts a story about US President Barack Obama being a devout Muslim and the Internet goes wild.

Despite the efforts of the White House communications team who are working 24/7 to contain the impact of such reports before they spin out of control, the story has already reached the screens of millions of people who are ready to believe anything they read on the World Wide Web.

Sure, filthy politics were around long before the arrival of the Internet. An example in point: Former President Richard Nixon liked to intimidate American voters, saying that if they voted for Catholic candidate John F. Kennedy they would effectively be voting to be ruled by the pope.

Nixon, of course, was able to spread this absurd conspiracy theory without the power of the Internet. However, the great power of the Web lies with the unprecedented speed of information distribution and the high degree of infiltration. There are millions of people out there who live in the world of the Internet; they more or less believe everything that they read online and treat every other form of information with skepticism.

Mainstream politicians everywhere have mostly lost contact with these people, and so have the traditional media, such as newspapers and television. Conspiracy theories, fabricated gossip and recycled reports are taking root in the collective subconscious and constitute fertile ground for movements such as the Tea Party in the United States and in all sorts of uber-populist groupings elsewhere.

All that poses a very big problem and, perhaps, one that cannot be solved.

Sure, we should not forget what the Internet has offered to billions of people around the globe, especially to those who would never have had the opportunity to educate, inform, or express themselves. It is still early to assess its impact on the history of the human race.

ekathimerini.com , Wednesday August 20, 2014 (11:39)  
End of reason, end of humanity
Banks need to step up
Tension for tensions sake?
Testing ground
Samaras pledges action after flash floods in Athens
Authorities began on Saturday assessing the damage done by flash floods in various parts of Athens a day earlier, with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras pledging that all those affected would b...
No court hearings for civil cases
Greek courts are to stop conducting hearings, which include witness questioning, for civil cases, according to plans drawn up by the Justice Ministry. Kathimerini understands that in a bid t...
Inside News
Nicosia says reforms are bringing results
Economic reforms in Cyprus are starting to yield results, the government said on Saturday after one credit-rating agency upgraded its rating and a second its outlook for the bailed-out count...
TAIPED waits for green light from Eurostat
Eurostat has frozen the securitization of properties that the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (TAIPED) had been planning. The project, drafted to bring some 400 million euros into t...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
A win is a win is a win for Olympiakos
A bad Olympiakos defeated a worse Laboral Kutxa 63-57 to make it two out of two in the Euroleague on Friday. In a game where the two teams had an overall field goal rate of about one in thre...
SOCCER
Panathinaikos snatches point at Eindhoven
Panathinaikos offered its fans a glimpse of its glorious past in European competitions snatching a draw at PSV Eindhoven, on an otherwise bad night for Greek soccer in the Europa League, as ...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Nicosia says reforms are bringing results
2. Samaras pledges action after flash floods in Athens
3. No court hearings for civil cases
4. Greeces lenders seem adamant that govt must act on bailout commitments
5. Future of Attica trash set to become clearer
6. Policeman admits to murder of his cousin-in-law
more news
Today
This Week
1. End of reason, end of humanity
2. Banks need to step up
3. Samaras pledges action after flash floods in Athens
4. Greeces lenders seem adamant that govt must act on bailout commitments
5. Nicosia says reforms are bringing results
6. No court hearings for civil cases
Today
This Week
1. The past, present and future of the Greek debt crisis
2. Greeces closed society is central to its current malaise
3. Greece must stick to reforms, says Schaeuble
4. At least 11 banks to fail European stress tests, three in Greece, report says
5. Cyprus to block Turkey's EU talks after EEZ violation
6. Stop moaning and get in the game
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.