Remembering to Forget in the Digital Age

The internet is threatening this mental balancing. For the first time in human history, remembering is the default –- simple, easy and seemingly free –- and forgetting is hard.

That would be okay if humans had developed mental mechanisms to discount the past when it no longer tells us something relevant to the present. But humans never had to develop ways to forget deliberately. Because forgetting was automatic, when people remembered things, or were reminded of them, they gave them significance and importance -– why would they otherwise remember?

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