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Active vs passive consumption

Passive consumption - mindless entertainment. Reality TV often falls into this category since it is often a scripted simulation of reality whose events and interactions are engineered, to various degrees, to provide entertainment. Sort of like the junk food version of media. You can find this version in any medium. There's junk food magazines, websites, books, movies, and even activities, like games; there's a big divide between a game like scrabble and a game like farmville.

Active consumption - Unlike food, at least part of how much value can be squeezed from a piece of content is how you're actively digesting it, but it starts with making a conscientious effort to seek out high quality content. Shows that challenge perspectives, that give you new information, whether in the non-fiction arena or just an insight into human behavior (improved theory of mind applies to fictional content the most). It isn't enough to just sit in front of good content being thrown at you, you have to engage your mind into noticing and doing things with that content. This is where you get improved retention and fodder for creative inspiration later on in life.


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