"A Princeton Digital Plus Title In Republic.com, Cass Sunstein argued that in cyberspace we already have the ability to filter out everything but what we wish to see. And tomorrow, our power to filter promises to increase exponentially. In all of the applause for this remarkable ascendance of personalized information, Sunstein asked the questions, Is it good for democracy? Is it healthy for the republic? What does this mean for freedom of speech? Republic.com exposed the treacherous drawbacks of egocentric Internet use, while showing us how to approach the Internet as responsible citizens, not just concerned consumers. Democracy, Sunstein maintained, depends on shared experiences and requires that we be exposed to topics and ideas that we would not have chosen in advance. Sunstein has crafted Echo Chambers in response to critics who found these arguments too remote a possibility. With concrete examples, he demonstrates how his central concern in Republic.com--the pernicious effect of listening solely to those opinions with which you already agree--yielded dangerous results in the impeachment trial of President Clinton and the bitter disputes that followed the 2000 Presidential Election. Using these highly charged events, Sunstein demonstrates that the problems of a narrow-news universe are real enough, and the potential for the Internet to greatly compound those problems very real indeed. This is the first title in Princeton University Pressâ€™s Digital Books Plus Program, which, in the spirit of Republic.com, is meant to foster debate both online and off. "
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