Base Camp is where visitors go to relax, unwind, and get familiar with an anthology of earlier material.

The Internet: Little Brother’s Greatest Weapon


December 5, 2011 | Vol. 178 No. 22 … An issue that reveals the shady side of editing

Some call it ingenious publishing. Giving the audience what they like, tending to their needs, that’s what it is all about. If revolution sells in one continent more than another, sell it. If anxiety has a positive side people need to know about, sell it. Sell anything the audience wants. Cater to the readership’s needs.

Only it seems more like catering to something else, something that involves reality getting glossed over and made to look different, building up the trivia while downplaying the crucial stuff. I mean, does anxiety really have a good side, and if it has – which it probably does, if one really thinks about it – do we care? Three other continents seem to think that what makes front cover news is Egypt’s second uprising.

What’s the deal with Smiley Toonsky? Talk about a gloss-over. The US edition looks like something out of Big Brother!

Here’s a wild guess: Time Magazine has decided to sell the revolution concept in three continents, while at the same time making sure its US readership remain calm when they read about it in the Features section, spinning anxiety into a cover story that reveals why it’s good for you.

Now that’s what I call a stroke of genius.

Or it could be much simpler than that. It could be that there’s a clear disconnection between the USA and the rest of the world, at least in Time magazine’s eyes. Whether it’s a real or fabricated divide remains to be seen. If it’s real, then it also remains to be seen whether the difference is organic and natural, something that was created over time, or whether there’s something more sinister going on, like the methodical dumbing down of an entire population through the mass media.

Fact is, the covers speak for themselves. Let us be thankful we have the internet to give us the full scoop at any given moment in time, on any subject. This is what the world wide web is all about.

As an afterthought, let me pose the following argument. The internet is the only truly transparent medium in operation right now. It has the amazing power to reveal cover ups and tell the truth, granting humanity an unprecedented capability to monitor our affairs. Perhaps this is why some agencies want to impose stricter regulation on it, disabling its transparent nature. They want to curtail and control the flow of free information, taking power away from individuals and giving it back to the publishing houses and their editors. To run stories that tell you anxiety is good for you while the rest of the world heaves and reels.

Let’s prevent this from happening. Contact your political representative and let him or her know that you will not accept any legislation designed to clamp down on the internet, for example, the Protect IP (Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011 – USA), or any such bill. Truth can’t be handed back to the publishing powerhouses and their glossy censors – I’m sorry, editors – just like that. We have come too far to hand our progress away.