The Media Kaleidoscope of Memory by Norman Solomon

Dandelion Salad

by Norman Solomon
Aug. 11, 2007

News coverage often fixates on many aspects of digital memory. The products, services, technologies and near-infinite implications of the Internet are constant media fodder. And enormous attention gets focused on the power of hard drives and small chips to do amazing things.

There’s no denying that the Internet and miniaturized computer technologies add up to a huge multilayered story that’s constantly evolving. The story runs the gamut from effects on individual lives to politics, economics, political machinations and global relations.
But meanwhile, the emphasis on the tangible and the measurable tends to overshadow what is far less defined — and, arguably, far more human. Computers can “remember” facts so prodigiously that human memory can seem feeble, even pathetic. Yet a lot of what humans remember is far beyond the realm of digital recall — and routinely beyond the grasp of media outlets.

Whether media organizations are reporting on events around the world or across town, the technical capabilities of speed and clarity are truly awesome. But, in terms of actual human experience, how true are the stories they convey?


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