|Weekly News Digest
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COVID-19 NEWS: 'COVID-19 Information Overload Leads to Simple but Unhelpful Choices'
EurekAlert! from the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) shares the following:
That the COVID-19 situation has been accompanied by a relentless flood of information is evident from a quick examination of newspaper front pages, top stories on any news channel, or trending topics on Twitter.
The TMI (too much information) effect has led to the danger of information overload[—]a phenomenon studied for over twenty years by Professor David Bawden and Dr Lyn Robinson of City University of London’s Department of Library and Information Science.
Overload occurs when too much relevant information is arriving, particularly when it comes through the ‘homogenising’ lens of the web browser, which makes it difficult to distinguish which information is reliable and helpful. It leads people to feel overwhelmed and powerless, and causes anxiety, fatigue, and paralysis of action; bad enough at any time, dangerous in a pandemic. …
Professor Bawden and Dr Robinson also say that in response, people seek simple, and often unhelpful, ways of choosing which information to focus on; even to the extent of just avoiding information completely.
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