From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Infornography is a portmanteau word formed by the combination of the words “information” and “pornography“. Infornography is used to define an addiction to or an obsession with acquiring, manipulating, and sharing information. People “suffering” from infornography are generally people that greatly enjoy receiving, sending, exchanging, and digitizing information.

The term was popularized by the cult cyberpunk anime series Serial Experiments Lain (1998), which used the word as the title of episode eleven; see Infornography (Serial Experiments Lain episode).

According to Science and Technology Studies scholar Lawrence Eng, the main idea behind the concept of infornography is that, in modern society, “information is being considered not just a valuable commodity from a practical point of view, but something that generates an almost sexual thrill, something that we lust after and enjoy hunting because it is special and gives us power.”[1]

The definition (without explicitly using the term itself) is also greatly applied in most cyberpunk settings, where information can almost be considered a currency of its own, or a separate world almost. Megacorps, hackers and other kinds of people use information to strive. They can subtly be called “infornographers”.

On the other hand receiving much apparently trivial information may be educational and form useful intellectual compulsions/habits for obtaining more knowledge. Wikipedia itself may be regarded as having the potential of providing much infornography should someone use it compulsively. It is very much debatable where a healthy thirst for knowledge ends and infornography begins.


  1. ^ thought experiments lain: infornography

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