Too much of nothing: filling space on the Internet
In case you've missed it, today is the last day of the January football transfer market. Sky TV reporters are strategically located outside some of the bigger clubs' stadia bringing us the latest gossip and possible news while most newspaper and broadcaster web sites have minute by minute updates on rumours, deals and more rumours.
Will Torres go to Chelsea, have Liverpool really bid £35m for Andy Carroll at Newcastle? Who's saying what? Who's heard what? Who's heard something from a man who knows a man who knows a man whose girlfriend works in the canteen at Spurs?
Thanks to the glories of the web we can spend close to every minute of the day chasing the latest scrap of information (sorry, gossip) about such and such a player. Fantastic, isn't it? But what if we just waited until the deadline had passed to see who had been sold and who had been bought? OK, we'd miss out on the 'excitement' of feeling we were part of the process, but we'd know as much as all those people checking the web sites every two minutes. And we'd get a lot of other things done in the meantime.
The internet is a great source of information but a lot of that information isn't really that important, it's just that it has to keep updating itself to justify its existence. The same goes for rolling news on TV. But just because it has to keep updating, doesn't mean that what it's updating with is of any value...
This was first published in January 2011