After reading this piece I started thinking about how this isn’t just an issue with content, it is an issue with the way people relate to each other generally.
Every week at work people ask the same questions.
On Monday, “How was your weekend?”
On Friday, “Any big plans for the weekend?”
My answers are usually, “Good” and “Not really”. It feels like a waste of my breath to divulge details of my life to someone I know is only asking out of habit and boredom. There’s no genuine desire for authentic connection behind those questions.
I feel like the content landscape is sort of a reflection and accentuation of this disinterested engagement. Talk for the sake of talk — not substance.
I think it is true people gravitate toward the “5 Ways To…..” posts because they don’t want to do the work. I also think it is true that a lot of people are lost and they genuinely don’t know what it means to do the work or how to do the work.
We’ve largely been disconnected from systems, communities, and traditions that used to help transition us through life. We aren’t always privy to the meaningful rituals and rites of passage that evolved over the centuries to help guide people on their journeys.
The content landscape seems to be a manifestation of this confusion and grasping for something of substance. Are certain junk posts a sign that people are just lazy readers? Or does their popularity point to a certain hunger in society that people are trying to satiate? Of course the answer is both, I suppose, but I’m curious about what the content landscape is a reaction to as much as I’m annoyed by what much of it has become.
Thanks for putting out a thoughtful piece and helping us stay critically conscious about what we produce and consume!