Thursday, May 26, 2005

Absolution for Couch Potatoes and Gamers - New York Times

Absolution for Couch Potatoes and Gamers - New York Times: "Hard evidence is so rare in 'Everything Bad Is Good for You' that it becomes disproportionately valuable when it does crop up. For instance, the best corroboration of the book's claim that television has become more subtle and elliptical involves the enormous new market for repackaging television series as DVD's. Perhaps there is a link between rising I.Q. scores and sophisticated television plotting, as the book suggests. More demonstrably, there's a link between selling something for home viewing and making it complicated enough to be worth a second, third or fourth look.
At the end of this book, the author backpedals. Not even he really believes the title statement, and even he realizes that the book's facile argument is missing something. Without a zero-sum model for the kinds of changes in thought that are cataloged here, Mr. Johnson need not explore the real price of new pop-cultural intelligence. He understands what skills we have gained. He'd rather not think about what we've lost. "
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