Evaluating Resources

How Information is Created: The Information Cycle

What is the information cycle and why does it matter?

The information cycle refers to how information is produced and changes over time. The University of Illinois Library defines it as "the progression of media coverage of a particular newsworthy event".

Why should you care about the information cycle? Well, it can affect whether or not you'll be able to find any information about a topic!

If your topic is a current event, you might only be able to find first-person accounts (interviews or tweets), newspaper articles, or videos on news sites. If you need more in-depth expert analysis, it might be too soon for anything to be published.

The University of Illinois Library has a great infographic on the information cycle. You can also view the text version.

information cycle and timeline