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Mass Media And The Internet - Flagged
The statement puts a claim based on an intermediate conclusion. It claims that people have enhanced their ability to sort through large quantities of information and find whats important is valid and can be backed by reason. But this claim is built on a intermediate conclusions which states that because of widespread use of media and internet; attention span has gone shorter. Yes its true that media and internet have spread extensively but to conclude that it has reduced the attention span of people in general is specious. Quality and length of attention span is solely a more of a individual trait for some it is a inborn quality and some train to increase efficiency of this trait. Use of media and widespread may effect attention span of some people but it cannot be treated as general rule that too in with a negative sense.
It is safe to say that widespread use of internet has not affected our ability to concentrate but has improved our ability to ignore the irrelevant.
Elaborating further, Firstly, lets take a hypothetical case which happen to us on a daily basis. While we see television we normally encounter multitudes of advertisements. Instinctively we pick up only those advertisements which are relevant to us and at the same time ignoring irrelevant ones. We do this frequently hence we have enhanced this ability to a great extent. This phenomenon is at work when we are reading newspaper, reading magazine or surfing through a recreational website. Till this point were just strolling on information, we are not getting deep into details as there is no need to be. Because we had intially started our strolling on information activity for recreational purpose. It may happen that we find something of great interest to us and we go in detail to like in the first example of television advertisement. So to conclude from this activity that we had small attention span is misleading. As its evident there was no need to.
Let take another example backing, consider that a person browsing in internet for availability of scholarships for a graduate course. In general he will for his information in a search site or in a college site or any other scholarship sites. Because of large matching results he will quickly scan through information which is relevant to him. After choosing what is relevant he then delves into it digging more information of it. Like when to apply, what is its eligibility, which time of year to apply etc. To get this kind of details one can only get if he has good attention span. Two different person using the same communication medium, same search site and college website may give different details. One may cover all attributes of a scholarship while other may miss when to apply part. So we see that it is not use of the medium that has caused affected the details part. But attention trait possessed by the two individual has given different results. These reinforces our argument that attention is an individual trait and not dampened by the medium. Rather Medium has helped him to get to the information. Applying his choosing skill he is indeed selectively applying his attention. Thus we see that It is not shortening of attention but widespread use of media and internet has cause effectively using one's attention.
Coming to a possible objection that attention of person in general has become shorter and after finding what is important he is unable to focus on it. And he switches to nearby information. This can be true but to blame widespread use of media is not founded. Because selectively choosing and staying on it and not getting distracted by other information is solely governed by ones will power and conviction of his goal. This is again an individual trait. Today there are people with varying capacities; each one of them differs in output but all are in same milieu. Equally exposed to widespread use of media and internet. Then why such a variation of capacities and outputs? The reason being is the quality of focus. If we had assumed that peoples focusing capacity has gone down and attention span had become shorter than all people would given output less than what was expected but which we know is not the case.
Thus we can conclude that widespread media has surely enhanced our choosing capacity or ignoring capacity. We are able to choose what is relevant to us in a more effective way. Once zeroing on what is important keeping attention in it till what is intended is achieved is all together an individual trait. Something for which widespread use and availability of internet and media are not responsible.
This essay has been flagged for deletion because its primary issue is its number of language errors. We cannot address that issue here. Purdue University's writing site may prove useful if you wish to undertake a review of English grammar.