If you’re interested in knowing a little more detail about how the Russians did their meddling in our 2016 election, Radiolab did a great podcast where they dug into some real world examples and it’s fascinating.
But it brings up an interesting point about news that I feel we as a nation need to be discussing more. It’s clear that we live now in an age where we can never be sure about what is true and real and what is altered or at worst, fake and propaganda. So what should we do about it? Right now we have Facebook and Twitter deciding for us what is fake and what is not but is that the best course of action? You can easily see a world where we end up with one news source (the collective ‘acceptable’ news sources as deemed ok by our social overlords, which ultimately will be the ones with the most money) and we will never trust anything else. But it’s those small, low budget bloggers and alt-news sites that in fact are the ones that we should be paying attention to because they are the ones that are more likely to be uninfluenced by large money interests and government propaganda machines.
What do we do? This is a really hard problem and it’s been made harder by the fact that the media, our media, has become so dependent on advertising and money. This wasn’t always the case. It used to be that news organizations on TV were exempt from making profits so that they could remain objective. I’ve said it before and I will say it again, watch the movie : Network. It was made in the 70s and it deals very well with this exact issue. There’s a reason it won like 7 Oscars.
What do you think we should do? What is the solution to fake-news and propaganda?