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Opinion
Tyler Cowen

Doomscrolling Has Ruined Our Sense of Time

First Covid and now the war in Ukraine have changed our worldview and shortened our patience.

Doomscrolling in the park.

Doomscrolling in the park.

Photographer: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images AsiaPac

The dual crises of the global pandemic and the war in Ukraine have been testing our governments, our institutions, our diplomacy — and our collective sense of time. In part because of social media, both events already seem intolerably long, even though the Russian invasion of Ukraine is less than a month old.

One of the most prominent words of the last few years is “doomscrolling.” People can now easily imbibe new information 24/7, about Covid or the war, simply by scrolling through social media on their phones.