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Cass Sunstein
With a new afterword by the author

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"Cass Sunstein sounds a timely warning in this concise, sophisticated account of the rise of the internet culture. He argues that it is our very ability to wrap ourselves in our own tastes, views, and prejudices with the aid of technology that constitutes a real threat to the traditional democratic values."--Peter Aspden, Financial Times

"[Sunstein] insists that we need to think more carefully about how to use the Internet as responsible citizens, rather than as mere consumers. . . . Democracy, rather than pure populism, requires that we experience unplanned encounters with opposing views."--Steven Poole, The Guardian (London)

"Sunstein persuasively warns that the Internet's capacity to serve up only what users order in advance could debilitate the clash of ideas critical to informed self-government . . . We have always been able to seek out those who share our assumptions and ignore ideas we don't like. But the Internet's ability to filter information instantaneously makes the sifting process so much more effective that we are in danger of transforming ourselves into a society of egocentric techno-tribalists, Sunstein warns."--Paul M. Barrett, The Washington Monthly

"Sunstein's thoughtful plea is that the virtues and necessities of shared experience, exposure to divergent views, and democratic political deliberation not get lost amid the triumphalism of the information age."--Foreign Affairs

"In the world of imperfect filtering, we stumble over ideas and views we would never seek out and with which we may violently disagree. But at least we encounter them; and these encounters are central to the US model of democracy. They are also central to freedom of speech, Sunstein argues."--Patti Waldmeir, Financial Times

"Sunstein has written a book that is thought-provoking in the most literal sense. It is a book less interested in giving answers than in raising questions, particularly about the rosy predictions for cyberspace."--James H. Johnston, Legal Times

"The phrase 'Information Age' doesn't really describe us but our systems and machines. That tells us a lot about ourselves. . . . [For Sunstein] 'information' primarily means democratic, political speech and the knowledge required for rational democratic deliberation on important public issues. Sunstein is worried that technologies of the Information Age, especially the Internet, are allowing us to escape and ignore this kind of information."--Gary Chapman, Washington Post Book World

" presents a novel and compelling argument, simply executed but eloquently turned, that marks it as an important book in the continuing debate over the press's role in democratic politics."--Harvard International Journal of Press/Politics


"Cass Sunstein is one of the nation's preeminent legal minds and constitutional scholars. In, he presents insightful and far-reaching perspectives on the Internet and its impact on free speech, the marketplace of ideas, and our democracy itself. He offers a lesson worth heeding by us all. The Internet is an effective means for preserving and promoting these cherished principles. But it also has the potential to undermine them--and we must not let that happen."--Senator Edward M. Kennedy

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File created: 4/21/2017

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