chapter  3
19 Pages

The Digital World

ByMartha C. Pennington, Robert P. Waxler

Marshall McLuhan's famous dictum that the medium is the message stressed the importance of particular media in shaping human consciousness. In the era of the Internet and Big Data, competition has become fierce and companies ignore these realities at their peril, as even a high-quality product can fail to ever reach or to sustain profitability unless its developers and marketers master online advertising, product placement, and often product delivery as well. Those who inhabit the digital world learn to divide their focus and to regulate their mental energy in short bursts that result in limited spans of attention. Digital media intensify a way of living and behaving that reduces the complexity of human life and changes the human experience to the kinds of experience which can be processed and represented electronically. The digital world is an increasingly familiar one for human beings but in many respects remains foreign and even hostile to our species.