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Definition: information overload

A symptom of the high-tech age, which is too much information for one person to absorb in a world of expanding digital technology. Information overload primarily comes from the gigantic amount of content on the Internet, including search engine results, blogs and social media. Web pages bombard the senses with ads, and junk email (spam) adds chaos. Combine the digital information with the traditional sources such as TV, magazines, newsletters and junk postal mail, and information overload is a fact of modern life in the developed world. See Data Smog, disinformation and digital vacation.

The Help Manuals Make It Worse
Information overload also includes the often indecipherable documentation that must be read to operate everything from a handheld device to a software application. It boils down to this: the volume of information that crossed our brains in one week at the end of the 20th century is more than a person received in a lifetime at the beginning of it. See user interface and RTFM.