In theory, the Internet, along with its kindred advances, should expand our horizons, speeding us to aesthetic and intellectual territories we haven’t charted before. Often it does. But at our instigation and with our assent, it also herds us into tribes of common thought and shared temperament, amplifying the timeless human tropism towards cliques. Cyberspace, like suburbia, has gated communities. Our Web bookmarks and our chosen social-media feeds helps us retreat deeper into our partisan camps. “It’s the great irony of the Internet era: People have more access than ever to an array of view points, but also the technological ability to screen out anything that doesn’t reinforce their views,” wrote Mr Jonathan Martin.
By: Frank Bruni