not taking the bait

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A fundamental case of the lopsided world of political propaganda is that "liberals never take the bait" of fake news:

Given the proliferation of fake news, NPR spent some time tracking down one of the kings of this new industry in order to find out more.

Jestin Coler, owner of the fake news site Denverguaridan.com, commented:

"We've tried to do similar things to liberals. It just has never worked, it never takes off. You'll get debunked within the first two comments and then the whole thing just kind of fizzles out."

Meanwhile, Will Oremus implores us to stop calling everything fake news:

Fake news is a real, specific problem. But in all the furor around who's making it, who's sharing it, its impact, and how to stop it, it's easy to lose sight of something more fundamental: what it is. The broader the definition, the less useful the concept becomes--and it's already verging on counterproductive.

He notes with disdain that "the top fake news stories are often shared even more widely than the actual news [while] right-wingers stopped ignoring the fake news discussion and began to co-opt the phrase as a synonym for liberal bias:"

...throwing the term fake news back at the mainstream media allows the right-wing fringe not only to insult their specific targets, such as CNN, but to devalue the term itself and along with it the idea that there is any clear distinction between truth and fiction. It's no surprise that those on the right who have embraced the meme most enthusiastically include conspiracy-mongers such as Infowars, which built its reputation by suggesting that the U.S. government helped orchestrate the Oklahoma City bombing and 9/11 attacks. We're now faced with a grim irony in which mainstream news outlets reporting on "Pizzagate" as a fake news story are themselves being labeled fake news outlets by the conspiracy theorists that propagated it. [emphasis added]

At this point, no one can stop right-wing nuts from attaching fake news as an epithet to every CNN report that bothers them. But there may still be time for the reality-based community to find enough common ground to tackle the original problem. If we can't collectively find a way to counter misinformation so egregious that even its authors admit it's a hoax, the outlook for the media--and the truth--in the Trump era is bleak indeed.

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on December 6, 2016 7:39 PM.

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