False information threatens the future of humanity

(Justin Brown) #1

@Eleprocon posted this in response to my article about the filter bubble and how to break free from it.

The article gives a brief overview of a research report on the existential threat we face from cyber-enabled information warfare.

The report warns: these “increases in the volume and velocity of information have created a louder and more chaotic information environment that stimulates fast, angry, reflexive, intuitive, and visceral thinking, reaction, and action in people and thus displaces more complex, reflective, and rational thought.”

It’s interesting to consider the threat we face from cyber-enabled information warfare and makes me think back to the time I interviewed Greg Copley, President of the Washington based International Strategic Studies Association. You can see the interview in the article related to this discussion:

I wonder about the extent to which dominant political actors are arming themselves by spreading misinformation through our global communication grid.

In my article about the filter bubble I (briefly) explained that Google and Facebook are prioritising media from established brands. It makes sense that they do this as they want to reduce the ability of actors to spread misinformation. Established brands aren’t immune to this but at least have clear editorial guidelines and practices for correcting errors.

(Bill Ames) #2

I noticed in the article at the link the statement:

They can exacerbate the effects of climate change by portraying it as a hoax.

Now, I am disappointed that an article on false news is promoting news that some consider as false. Yes, I know it is getting warmer but some recent research is showing it is not caused by what humans have done.

I honestly believe that we need all of our data to be analyzed so when you are reading something you can invoke the help of an AI to tell you the probability that the statements are true.

(ACD) #3

This site has a link to a spreadsheet which details television station ownership in the US.

Sinclair and Tribune, first and ninth ranked, are merging.

It is rich that the Washington Post, owned by Bezos of Amazon, is reporting this.

Of course, concentrated media ownership is not only in the US.

"… the real underlying currency in our world is not gold, nor bureaucratic fiat, nor even raw military might. The real underlying currency of our world is narrative, and the ability to control it… the trouble with democracy, it turns out, is that human minds are very hackable, when they are pursued with enough resources… billionaires and narrative control consistently go hand-in-hand… In order to escape from the increasingly adept narrative control matrix that is being built around our collective mind by the powerful, we’re going to have to change our relationship with narrative altogether.

(Bill Ames) #4

Very interesting. Reading something like this (I guess it is the same in the USA) one may ask, why are there no news sources being run and presented by honorable men and women? Perhaps society has not delivered from its educational process any people who think and are quality people? If that is the problem then society is getting just what it deserves. It would be easy for a quality news source to point out the lies from other sources, often the facts are wrong or manipulated or just made up. A creditable news source would only have to point these out. So, why are there no creditable news sources run by honorable men and women? Perhaps they no longer exist in sufficient quality?

(Boi Yen HA) #5

I am currently doing research on climate change impacts on the economy. It would be interesting to read the research you mentioned.
Do you remember/store the name of the research?