By Rob Meyne
- May 20, 2023
- 4-min read
If you ever feel like you are living in a different world than your friends, neighbors, or work mates, it is because you are. We may reside on the same planet, but the specifics that make up our “worlds” are distinct in infinite ways.
Our opinions on political issues are often in conflict because they are based on a completely different understanding of the facts. It is hard to overstate how much this contributes to national division.
Constructive policy can be developed through collaboration and compromise. But it is difficult to do that when you don’t even agree on the facts. Since we’re not making decisions based on a common, agreed upon set of data, it is inevitable there will be huge disagreements.
A variety of dynamic factors have led to this.
For one, the way we get information has changed more dramatically in the past two decades than at any time since a guy named Guttenberg was doing his thing. Newspapers, broadcast TV, and radio are still around, but their influence is waning. Cable and streaming services exert tremendous influence, as do podcasts, social media, and various subscription services.
Mainstream “corporate” media is still powerful, but its role has been largely usurped by digital communications that are accessible wirelessly. This diversification in communications – the way information is conveyed – is unprecedented and getting more complex.
Two, governmental agencies, mainstream media, tech companies, political organizations, and NGOs are very good at coordinating their activities, suppressing speech, and promoting only those messages that meet their preferred narratives. If you don’t believe this, spend ten minutes looking at the “Twitter Files.” It is no longer deniable that the CIA, FBI, and even the Democratic National Committee are able to censor stories on Twitter and other platforms on an ongoing basis.
As artificial intelligence gets more pervasive, it will become the source of editorial direction that impacts everything we see. It will make it easier to censor even accurate information long before it has a chance to enter your newsfeed or inbox.