Beware the Online Echo Chamber

I can’t remember where I heard the analogy comparing modern day use of social media and online news, to a person shouting into an echo chamber…

But I like it!

The analogy that is, not the practice of doing this.

Sadly, this is true of how many of us communicate these days.

We broadcast information, showing off the image of ourselves that we wish to present, hiding the genuine one in the process. We ingest news that aligns with our viewpoint, ignoring anything that doesn’t. When we do find opinions that differ with our own, we shout them down, call them names or worse, demand their firing.

It’s an easy trap to fall into, but a dangerous one.

Beware the online echo chamber.

As good as it might feel to have your opinions stroked, this environment is all about speaking and little about listening. Or empathy.

Indeed, the more time I spend online, the less optimistic I feel about humanity.

But its okay folks… because the actual world isn’t anywhere near as bad as this.

You’ll see that, as soon as you get out of the trap.

So as soon as you put your phone down and embark upon a real, face to face conversation, you’ll find that people can listen and learn and understand and have empathy; at least when they’re not speaking to you from behind a screen.

And a tip to help in avoiding the trap in the future… is to embrace the opportunity to listen to opinions which differ from your own; to see things from another point of view, with empathy.

Not only does this allow you to learn and open your mind further, but it will also allow you to really connect and form bonds with people who aren’t exactly like you – something that makes life infinitely less dull.


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