Some facts before we get started

So I thought I’d share some facts before I get too far ahead of myself here and solve the epidemic known as information overload.

To be honest… I take comfort in these facts. They tell me I am not insane, not losing my mind, not alone. They also tell me knowledge is power. If that is the case — we have the power my friends.

For example, did you know that:

  • 42 percent of respondents to a 2007 Accenture survey said they accidentally use the wrong information at least once a week and 53 percent said that less than half of the information they receive is valuable.
  • According to a LexisNexis study earlier this year 62 percent of those surveyed say they spend a lot of time sifting thought irrelevant information to find what they are looking for and 68 percent said they wish they could spend more time working with the information they have versus trying to manage it all.
  • This year, IDC says that 281 exabytes of information will be created — five million times the information included in all the books ever written.

I could go on and on. So take heart. I know I do. You aren’t alone.

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  1. Susan Unger August 7, 2008 - Reply

    I noticed that none of the percentages fits into the 80/20 rule. Maybe if we expected that only 80% of the time we would get the information we need, when we need need it, we wouldn’t ‘feel’ overloaded. Is overloaded an emotion? What is the break point or factual basis for ‘being overloaded.’ Is one man’s coffee another man’s cream?

  2. Amy Wohl August 11, 2008 - Reply

    Simplifying our Information Overload problem requires action. Being passive doesn’t work. I have a few programs in place: (1) I am trying to eliminate paper magazines unless I love to read that particular magazine on paper (food magazines would be a good example for me) or I can’t get that information another way. I have been ruthlessly discontinuing all those IT magazine subscriptions where they’ve already sent me all the info in newsletters via email and blogs anyway; be stern, they try really hard to keep you as a subscriber; you’re part of their advertising revenue. (2) I try to convince every kind of correspondent to send me things electronically to eliminate paper which I must physically handle and read as a separate stream and then somehow integrate with my email and electronic filing. I just throw a lot of it out. Telling PR people you won’t read what they send you unless it’s electronic has a salutary effect. Besides, piles in electronic folders are invisible; piles on my desk and shelves are not.

  3. sandrar September 10, 2009 - Reply

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

  4. Tricia Baird February 2, 2010 - Reply

    I discovered your blog when I was looking for something unrelated, but this page was on the first page of Bing your site must be insanely popular! Continue the good work!

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