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We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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I am the Swine Flu: A Social Media Masterclass

March 20, 2012, 12:00 AM

Among other things, Baratunde Thurston is a social and political satirist. So in 2009, when paranoid fervor about the disease formerly known as the Swine Flu was at its height, he masqueraded as the Swine Flu on Twitter and Facebook. 

With their angry pig icon and badass attitude, Baratunde's swine flu accounts quickly (yes, I said it) went viral, getting write-ups in major media outlets like The Huffington Post and prominent followers like (someone explain this please) Mitt Romney. Much of the experiment's success was the result of Baratunde's energy and inventiveness in enacting the disease across various platforms. 

The “swine flu experiment” was a brilliant, well-timed satire on media frenzy, but it’s also a masterclass in the creative use of social media. 



Follow Jason Gots (@jgots) on Twitter




I am the Swine Flu: A Socia...

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