The “old” adage on the internet is that “information wants to be free”. That’s true in terms of marginal cost of sharing information - once created, it is essentially free to share with an additional person.
That said, I think there is a competing pressure a lot of us feel - the marginal “thing” we read on the web is crap. It my be delicious, salty, crap, but it is nutritionally empty of original thought or meaning. It’s why we delete or quit or fast from social media. It’s why we save clicks.
Over the last year, I’ve tried to be more intentional in what media I consume, just like I am with what food I consume. Less sugar, more vegetables. Weekly over daily. Paid over free.
Free news has all the bad incentives of fast food. Not to belabor the analogy, but your food and information diet both benefit from intention. I pick and curate my sources. Part of this is the rise of amazing, niche email newsletters and podcasts. By paying for the sources you like, you keep them working, and help them do more. Your interest can be so focused there are just 999 other true fans.
I use pocket to save interesting links, and recently combed through years of added links to archive most things. 99% of what I added didn’t seem relevant at a glance anymore. There is always another thing to read, always more to consume. Much of it is just noise. I’m trying to focus, I’m trying to think deeper. Part of that is writing here again. Part of that is curating what I read. And part of that is supporting the people producing thoughtful things I love. I get not everyone can afford to subscribe, but I can and will.