Friday 28 July 2017

Slower information

I've noticed a disturbing trend.

Once upon a time, if someone had something to say, they put it into words. You would  write an essay, perhaps published a pamphlet, or wrote a blog post. But that changed a few years ago.

It's become very common now for people to create "memes" (a completely wrong use of the word coined by Richard Dawkins, but hey, language evolves). A meme is now a picture of a statement of opinion (rarely of fact) as words overlaying a picture (which is sometimes relevant). Usually, it's pointless to include the picture; sometimes it's a bit amusing.

But I've just started to see something really bad; a video of a meme. This is a static picture, but displayed as a video! So whereas it would normally take a fraction of a second to read, now we are tricked into wasting several seconds before we realise that this "video" is just a static picture.

I don't understand why people do this.

While I'm on this topic, I'd also like to explain that in the 15 minutes that it might take me to watch a video of a person speaking a script, I could read the same thing in text in about one minute. Maybe I'm in a minority of people who can read faster than they can hear speech, but I don't think so. And often, a few seonds in to the video, I lose patience at the slow rate of information transfer, and read something else.

By the way, I've just signed up to the Facebook group "Christians against Nasa". It's a flat-earth group.


  1. On the other hand- I searched out and watched a YouTube video of a man replacing the upper suspension arm on a car (same model as mine) which encouraged me to do the same job to get my car through the MOT, costing just £18 for the part. I had thought the job too difficult or expensive before I saw the video, and was on the verge of scrapping the car. So it has its place.

  2. Videos certainly have their place - I got great benefit from a video that demonstrated disassembly of the bike motor that I use.

    What I'm less keen on, though, is a video that's just a talking head.