"Give the people contests they win by remembering the words to more popular songs or the names of state capitals or how much corn Iowa grew last year. Cram them full of noncombustible data, chock them so damned full of 'facts' they feel stuffed, but absolutely 'brilliant' with information. They they'll feel they're thinking, they'll get a sense of motion without moving."p. 54 Great Books of the 20th C edition. Sounds like reality TV, sounds like Singing Bee on NBC, sounds like the News. Sounds like Google. Years later, it seems this is still the crux for Bradbury, as he explains here.
Isn't this what some say about the Internet? The Information age? Even the rise of search engines and OPACs, all this computer data spitting out the answers without enough time for people to think about what's in front of them, or what they really want.
To our credit of course, we're not burning the books. And there are many, I think who believe that going paperless does not have to equate with becoming mindless drones. I suppose there will be always be something about the feel of a book in the hand. (A book in the hand is worth two on the screen? I don't know...) The way some fall asleep with it still in their hand or covering over their face.
In a sense, librarians are information gatekeepers. I don't want to forget that information isn't the same as knowledge. Vibration isn't the same as action. We are moving, but we can't forget to bring our books, our opinions, our challenges, our minds.