By Hsiang Iris Chyi

Chyi, H. I. (2009). Information surplus and news consumption in the digital age: Impact and implications. In Z. Papacharissi (Ed.), Journalism and citizenship: New agendas (pp. 91-107). New York: Taylor & Francis.


One key factor that is very often underestimated, if not neglected, during the discussion about the decline in news consumption is “information surplus” – the oversupply of information, which in large part is caused by the Internet’s capacity of distributing content at minimal cost, particularly in the web 2.0 era, when the amount of user-generated content is growing exponentially.

Information Surplus

Information surplus: Excessive information is available even at the price of zero.

Today’s information environment suggests that the information surplus phenomenon is an on-going process. There is no reason to believe that the supply curve would stop shifting to the right after reaching S3, suggesting future declines in news consumption. It is therefore important to examine news consumption in the context of information surplus.

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