You May Also Like: Taste in an Age of Endless Choice

Why We Often, Mistakenly, Think the Past was a Golden Age

This argument — for example, “Why isn’t music as good as it used to be?” — reflects a historical selection bias, one colorfully described by the designer Frank Chimero. “Let me let you in on a little secret,” he writes. “If you are hearing about something old, it is almost certainly good. Why? Because nobody wants to talk about shitty old stuff, but lots of people still talk about shitty new stuff, because they are still trying to figure out if it is shitty or not. The past wasn’t better, we just forgot about all the shitty shit.”

Excerpt from, You May Also Like: Taste in an Age of Endless Choice by Tom Vanderbilt

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