‘In many ways, technology has erased the proverbial world in which if a person ran out of sugar, he or she would go next door to borrow a cup from a neighbor.’ (Source).
I don't think the idea of online technology erasing neighbourly relations has much basis in reality. I think the author might be taking one ‘proverbial’ world - if the word (which means 'well-known') is used ecccentrically in the sense of ‘imaginary’ – to conjure another ‘proverbial’ (imaginary) world.
I’d love to hear if there is any known instance in recent history of someone finding themselves in unexpected need of a cup of sugar, and falling back on the generosity of a neighbour to supply it? It sounds like fairly unusual behaviour; but rather more probable than the erasure of neighbourly relations through online technology.