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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The Rise of Infocracy: Virtualized Human Interplays, Decline of Physical Interactions, and the Adaptation of People’s Social Valuation System

Creative Commons 'BY' version 3.0 license

Rapid technological advances, our insatiable appetite for instantaneous rewards, and the massive information overflow are impacting our everyday lives. The long term effects of the social informatification, people’s overreliance on massive amounts of dynamic digital information, remain enigmatic and poorly understood. Our ability to anticipate, prepare, react and adopt to potential negative consequences of the minute-by-minute existence in the new infoctratic world, complete virtual immersion into a digital information where most time, energy and resources are dedicated to rapid acquisition, processing and inference using large amounts of information, may have a significant long term impact on mankind. This opinion outlines the scope of our virtualized abilities to manage and interpret Exabytes of information and suggests that timely prediction and appropriate response to the information avalanche will be critical to managing the unavoidable social and cultural changes ahead.

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