The old saying “you learn something new every day” seems to be shifting to “you learn something new every minute.” Between Facebook, Twitter, Email, Google, and the other countless amounts of information that can be accessed within seconds with just the touch of a few buttons, it seems nearly impossible to not become overwhelmed with information.
In Sharon Begley’s article, “I Can’t Think” she mentioned the term, information-fatigue. As soon as I read this word, I couldn’t help but to think about the most dreadful time of the semester- – textbook buying. Not only do we have three different textbook stores that are constantly competing right near campus, but we also have the endless amounts of online companies that sell our textbooks. This is when we run into information-fatigue. We are constantly trying to find the cheapest, best quality book there is to offer. While on my hunt for this rare breed of books, I have every possible tab opened with every possible book available. Then there is always that thought in the back of your head—“maybe I can find it cheaper somewhere else.” This is when you become mentally worn out.
Another issue that arises with information overload is the inability to distinguish between fact and fiction. For example, our Facebook feeds are constantly flowing with different topics of discussion attached with numerous opinions on the topic. One thing I must admit about our generation is that they have an impeccable way of persuading people that their opinion is a fact. This is when you run into the issue of figuring out what is true and what is false.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for this deadly amount of information. The only thing we can do is realize there is always another option.