In my newspaper* today the columnist Mike Royko was quoted as saying, “It’s been my policy to view the Internet not as an ‘information highway’ but as an electronic asylum filled with babbling loonies.”
Mike must not have seen a highway before he left us. Alongside those long ribbons of cement stretching far into the future lie a great deal of garbage.
The Internet is no different. Instead of paper bags, bottles, used baby diapers and tin cans, the ‘Information Highway’ is littered with thoughts of the barely literate. Those thoughts may have all the value of a used diaper but many fall short of that goal.
Mike died in 1997. It is a good thing he is not around to view the Internet’s roadside today. We have learned to survive the last fifteen years because we were made of sterner stuff. Or, maybe because we learned to look down the highway toward our goal, not letting ourselves be distracted by the babbling loonies.
Well, some of us, anyway.
*Orange County Register