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Ethan Zuckerman, meu ídolo, foi um dos palestrantes do TED 2010 e mais uma vez ofereceu um ângulo da internet tão provocador quanto ignorado.

The promise of the internet – the idea that everything is just a click a way – is that, here in Britain I can read newspapers from Australia, India, Nigeria, Ghana, Canada, at no cost and end up with a wider view of the world. The truth is that – on average – I won’t. I analyzed data from Doubleclick Ad Planner, looking at the top 50 news sites in each of thirty countries – in the UK, over 95% of traffic to the most popular news sites is to domestic sites. It’s one of those rare cases where the US can accuse the UK of being more parochial than we are – we like the BBC, the Telegraph, the Guardian, and as much as 6% of our news readership is of British media. But it’s not just the US or the UK – you’ll see that 94% of news read by Indian internet users – who are on average a lot wealthier, worldlier and English-literate than the average Indian citizen – spend 94% of their time on domestic news sites.

It’s data like this that’s leading me to conclude that the internet isn’t flattening the world the way Nicholas Negroponte thought it would. Instead, my fear is that it’s making us “imaginary cosmopolitans”. We think we’re getting a broad view of the world because it’s possible that our television, newspapers and internet could be giving us a vastly wider picture than was available for our parents or grandparents. When we look at what’s actually happening, our worldview might actually be narrowing.

Having this wider picture of the world is critical for global survival. In the course of four days at TED, we’re going to hear about problems like global warming, pandemic, collective security that can’t be solved by individuals or by nations acting alone – they’re global problems and they’re going to require global solutions. And because the theme of the conference is “The Good News”, it’s worth pointing out that the most exciting opportunities – to make a difference, to make something beautiful or to make a profit – are global in scale. We need to build solutions based on massive, transnational cooperation, which needs to begin with dialog that crosses linguistic, social, national lines

O Ethan citou inclusive o Cala a Boca, Galvão. E ainda tem um trecho emblemático da miopia americana:

“When I was growing up in the US the 1970s, 35-40% of an average nightly newscast focused on international stories. The percentage of international news in an average newscast now 12-15%.”

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