Posted by: globalorama | June 11, 2007

Are we Mis-informed or Over-informed???

I remember my 7th grade English teacher saying how those who do not know are happier. At the time, he was referring to a bunch of hoodlum classmates that had a lot of fun but couldn’t recite the English alphabet. in the midst of Paris Hilton’s “breaking news,” and the amount, or lack, of resistance the U.S. foreign policy faces from Americans, you would realize that when people are under- or mis-informed live a more comfortable life than those who know everything and get stressed over every bit of news they receive. If you guys remember living the the 90’s in Jordan (it is probably still the same these days), the family’s gathering centered around the 8 o’clock news. At the time, ghalib el hadeedi, sawsan tufaha, and afaf qadamani will deliver 30 uninteruppted minutes of news.

also, given the country’s size, and according to Jordanian high level of showing off, almost every body in Jordan is two or three degrees of seperation form the rest. if you put one Jordanian on LinkedIn, he/she would have ~6 million connections within a week. Consequently, information, true or not, moves around the Jordanian society at light speed. this dynamic information environment leads to detrimental consequenses in the way of stressing out more often, holding-in blood-pressure-raising bitterness towards some official, building animosity amongst tribes, and increase hate between people of different national origins.

these thoughts came to mind while I was watching a sketch by Jay Leno in regard to American media coverage to the Hilton news. He mentioned that news channels  dedicated so much time for Paris, while the nation is at war. In the U.S., people tend to care more about the NBA, Sopranos, Shopping, and their immediate circle of family and friends than they would about what Hugo Chavez said about Bush, why their country is at war, or why Wolfowitz resigned. Well, I think we can all agree that Americans are either mis-informed or under-informed, but certainly not over-informed.

In Jordan, I believe Jordanians are way over-informed. I do not believe they can help it though. but, I do not believe Jordanians are directing their energy in the right direction by focusing on  on what the government wants them to know, or do.

what do you think?


  1. But thats what makes us special, Jordanian are the most politically aware people in the arab world if not in the world, we are born talking politics, but sadly we are at the end when it comes to action..People forget that the government are their servants not the other way around, when jordanians realize that everything will change..Hell, even when you want to buy a falafel sandwish in jordan, the egyptian guy treat you like he is doing you a favor!!

  2. great post globalorama.

    Yes I do believe that Jordanians are over-informed, hence all the misery! Ignorance is a bliss, my friend.

    I clearly remember how my late grandfather would carry his radio wherever he goes.

  3. In general, Arabs (non Gulf) are typically much more informed about foreign and local affairs (local affairs are a gossip for the young and foreign for the old).

    I have been in the States for a while and I turned many heads when I told them I am from Syria. It seemed to them to be some sort of fertile (as in sexual) island in the Pacific.

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