I found the ad to the right looking at the latest iteration of This Magazine's website. It looks great, and I like the magazine, so I have less than no problem using my blog as ad space for them.
Especially considering I plan on tearing the ad a new one.
This is the kind of argument that can only come from the devastatingly out of touch. That This.org would use this specific quote to highlight the value of the magazine is painful. It perfectly encapsulates the failure of traditional print publications to understand how information works today.
Not how information works online. How information works TODAY, period.
Everything is, and has, context. A link and a search box is access to unlimited context, if people are interested in finding it. I'm not arguing that presenting an idea or opinion shouldn't have clear contextual information, but pretending that online is somehow predisposed against context ignores how information is sorted.
Even in the best print publication, there is limited space allotted for dissenting viewpoints. Very often, they are presented only long enough to be dismissed, straw men to further emphasize the chosen perspective. Similarly, the single, inane quote from a dissenter provides litter context or balance.
Online publishing is not "factoids of information devoid of context". Nothing published online is devoid of context. The internet is MADE of context. Which is why it enforces transparency, updating, editing, and acknowledging other sources via linking.
I often think this is the real problem that many traditional media outlets have with online information - it's nearly impossible to do it right without drawing attention to, and acknowledging the validity of, competing sources of information and insight.