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The ‘innocent internet’ died and the 21st century was born [Opinion]

Houston Chronicle – John Leavitt: “Forget the calendar. Just as the 19th century didn’t really end until Armistice Day in 1918 and the 1960s counterculture lasted well into the 1970s, the 21st century didn’t begin at the end of 2000. It began in 2014. In that year, drought conditions in California hit record highs, prompting fears of massive fires in the future. America watched transfixed as civil unrest was live-streamed online following the police shooting of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. Sen. Bernie Sanders started to make headlines as a possible 2016 contender. Republicans swept the Senate and gained the largest majority in the House in decades, leading PBS to go so far as to say “there are no more moderates.” The feeling in 2014 was of waiting for something to happen. And five years later, it feels like it was the year the world we’re living in now began to take shape. The phrase ‘jobless recovery’ got thrown around and it looked like the big banking reforms promised in the wake of the 2008 recession weren’t going to happen. In Texas, the fracking bubble burst when the world oil markets were glutted, deflating hopes of a continuing boom-time. We weren’t going to return to the old normal. We were starting something new…”

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