An interesting post over at Boing Boing about Clay Shirky and his book Here Comes Everybody. He postulates that the death of the sitcom and the lackluster shows on TV have driven people to other things, including the ability to think again.
Need proof? Look at Wikipedia.
So if you take Wikipedia as a kind of unit, all of Wikipedia, the whole project--every page, every edit, every talk page, every line of code, in every language that Wikipedia exists in--that represents something like the cumulation of 100 million hours of human thought.