Information Pollution, a Mounting Threat: Internet a Major Causality

  • Pandita, Ramesh
  • Received : 2013.12.03
  • Accepted : 2014.11.10
  • Published : 2014.12.31


The present discourse lasts around, information pollution, causes and concerns of information pollution, internet as a major causality and how it affects the decision making ability of an individual. As, information producers in the process to not to lose the readership of their content, and to cater the information requirements of both the electronic and the print readers, reproduce almost the whole of the printed information in digital form as well. Abundant literature is also equally produced in electronic format only, thereon, sharing this information on hundreds of social networking sites, like, Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, Flicker, Digg, LinkedIn, etc. without attributions to original authors, have created almost a mess of this whole information produced and disseminated. Accordingly, the study discusses about the sources of information pollution, the aspects of unstructured information along with plagiarism. Towards the end of the paper stress has been laid on information literacy, as how it can prove handy in addressing the issue with some measures, which can help in regulating the behaviour of information producers.


Information;Information Pollution (IP);Internet;WWW;Social Media;Print & Electronic Document


  1. Barun, J. (1997). Past, possibilities and potholes on the information super highway. Social Education. 61(3), 149-153.
  2. Alba, J. W., Hutchinson , J. W., & Lynch, J. G., (1991). Memory and Decision Making. Handbook of Consumer Behavior, ed. Thomas S. Robertson and Harold K. Kassarjian, Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1-49
  3. Alexander, J. E., & Tate, M. A. (1999). Web Wisdom: How to Evaluate and Create Information Quality on the Web. Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  4. Allen, D. G., Griffeth, R. W. (1997). Vertical and lateral information processing: The effects of gender, employee classification level and media richness on communication and work outcomes. Human Relations. 50, 1239-1260
  5. Baecker, R. M., Grudin, J., Buxton, W. A. S., & Greenberg, S. (1995). Readings in human-computer interaction: Toward the year 2000. San Francisco, CA: Morgan Kauffman
  6. Barnes, F., & Childers, T. (2002). Stephen Ambrose, Copycat. The Weekly Standard.
  7. Biden, J. R., Biden, J., Wildthyme, I., Lord, T., Leifeld, R., Blair, J., & King, M. L. Plagiarism. In Encyclopedia.
  8. Bleakly, A., & Carrigan, J. L. (1994). Resource-Based Learning Activities: Information Literacy For High School Students. American Library Association, Chicago, IL.
  9. Bray, D. A. (2008). Information Pollution, Knowledge Overload, Limited Attention Spans, and Our Responsibilities as IS Professionals. Global Information Technology Management Association (GITMA) World Conference. Available at SSRN:
  10. Buchanan, J., & Kock, N. (2001). Information overload: A decision making perspective. In Multiple Criteria Decision Making in the New Millennium (pp. 49-58). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
  11. Cameron, G. T., & Curtin, P. A. (1995). Tracing sources of information pollution: A survey and experimental test of print media's labeling policy for feature advertising. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, 72(1), 178-189
  12. Campbell, S. W. (2006). Perceptions of mobile phones in college classrooms: Ringing, cheating, and classroom policies. Communication education, 55(3), 280-294.
  13. Clark, D. T., Gottfried B. A. (1957). University Dictionary of Business and Finance, New York: Crowell, p168
  14. Crader, Bo. (2002). A historian and her sources. the weekly Standard, Retrieved on September 25, 2013, from
  15. Eva, K. W., Hatala, R. M., LeBlanc, V. R., & Brooks, L. R. (2007). Teaching from the clinical reasoning literature: combined reasoning strategies help novice diagnosticians overcome misleading information. Medical education, 41(12), 1152-1158
  16. Deibert, R. J. (2009). The geopolitics of internet control: Censorship, sovereignty, and cyberspace. The Routledge handbook of internet politics, 323-336
  17. Eastin, M. S. (2001). Credibility assessments of online health information: The effects of source expertise and knowledge of content. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 6(4), 0-0.
  18. Eschenbrenner, A. J. (1971). Effects of intermittent noise on the performance of a complex psychomotor task. Human Factors, 13, 59-63
  19. Falkinger, J. (2008). Limited Attention as a Scarce Resource in Information-Rich Economies. The Economic Journal, 118(532), 1596-1620.
  20. Fialkoff, F. (1993). There's no excuse for plagiarism, Library Journal, 118(17), p. 56
  21. Floridi, L. (2002). Information ethics: an environmental approach to the digital divide. Philosophy in the Contemporary World, 9(1), 39-45
  22. Fritch, J. W., & Cromwell, R. L. (2001). Evaluating Internet resources: Identity, affiliation, and cognitive authority in a networked world. Journal of the American Society for Information science and Technology, 52(6), 499-507
  23. Haider, A., & Koronios, A. (2003). Authenticity of Information in Cyberspace: IQ in the Internet, Web, and e-Business (Doctoral dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology).
  24. Hanks, P. (Ed.) (1979). Collins Dictionary of the English Language (Glasgow, William Collins)
  25. Harris, R. (1999). WebQuester: A guidebook to the Web. Boston: McGraw-Hill.
  26. Hasher, L., David, G., & Thomas, T. (1977). Frequency and the Conference of Referential Validity, Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 16(February), 107-12.
  27. Information Pollution, Information pollution. Retrieved on Sept 21, 2013 from
  28. Lewis, M. (2002). Plagiarism Controversy: Ambrose Problems Date to Ph.D Thesis, Retrieved on October 02, 2013, from
  29. Milford, J. T., & Perry, R. P. (1977). A methodological study of overload. Journal of General Psychology, 97, 131 - 137
  30. Ling, R. (2004). The mobile connection: The cell phone's impact on society. San Francisco: Morgan Kaufman Publishers
  31. Maurice, S., & Corien, P. (2006). Unreliable information on the internet: a challenging dilemma for the law, Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, 4(1), pp.49 - 59
  32. McCloskey, M & Zaragoza, M. (1985). Misleading post event information and memory for events: Arguments and evidence against memory impairment hypotheses. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 114(1), 1-16.
  33. Morrison, J. L., & Stein, L. L. (1999). Assuring integrity of information utility in cyber-learning formats. Reference Services Review, 27(4), 317-326.
  34. Netizens. (n.d). Retrieved on September 21, 2013 from
  35. Nielsen, J. (2003). Information Pollution. Retrieved on October 20, 2013, from
  36. Nielsen, J. (2004). Ten Steps for Cleaning Information Pollution. Retrived on April 03, 2014 from
  37. Orman, L. (1984). Fighting Information Pollution with Decision Support System. Journal of Management Information Systems. Edition 2. pp.64-71
  38. Pandita, R. (18 February 2013). Censorship and Social Media. Retrieved on April 01, 2014 from
  39. Pandita, Ramesh., & Singh, S. (2012). Information Literacy: An Indispensable Tool to Develop Professional Competence in Digital Environment. Proceedings of 13th MALIBNET (Management Libraries Network) conference, held at IIM, Indore, October 2-3, pp. 331-337
  40. Panko, R. R. (1992). Managerial communication patterns. Journal of Organizational Computing, 2( l), 95- 122
  41. Postman, N. (1992). Technopoly. New York; Vintage Books
  42. Random House. (1993). The Random House Unabridged Dictionary, New York: Random House, Inc, p. 197
  43. Reuters. (1997). Gallup-San Jose St. University Survey, June 24
  44. Richmond, B. (1998). CCCCCCC.CCC (Ten Cs) for Evaluating Internet Resources, Emergency Librarian, 25 (5), 20-23
  45. Simon, H. A. (1979). Information processing models of cognition. Annual Review of Psychology. 30, 363-396
  46. Speier, Cheri., Valacich, Joseph S., & Vessy Iris. (1999). The Influence of Task Interruption on Individual Decision Making: An Information Overload Perspective. Decision Science. 30(2), 337-360.
  47. Stover, A., & Nielsen, J. E-mail newsletter usabil¬ity: 79 design guidelines for subscription, newsletter content and account maintenance based on usability studies. Nielsen Norman Group, Fremont, CA. 2002; see
  48. Totenberg, N. (1992). Nina Totenberg. US NEWS & WORLD REPORT, 112(7), 21.
  49. Woodhead, M. M. (1965). The effects of bursts of noise on an arithmetic task. American Journal of Psychology, 77, 627-633.
  50. Black, H. C. (1968). Black's Law Dictionary: Definitions of the Terms and Phrases of American and English Jurisprudence, Ancient and Modern, 4th Ed., St. Paul, Minnesota: West Publishing Company, p.168.

Cited by

  1. Research growth in LIS during last decade: a study vol.64, pp.8/9, 2015,
  2. The assessment of perceived information pollution in banking sector vol.35, pp.2, 2018,