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Month: September 2018

Media propaganda operations during election seasons

Media propaganda operations during election seasons

During election season, local media outlets post their “voter recommendations” or “endorsements” in a form of straight up propaganda messaging intended to persuade a group of people to adopt the publisher’s own agenda. All media – from traditional industrial media operations to social media – are primarily propaganda operations.

#Facebook uses your phone number for 2FA to better target you with propaganda advertising #NoTrust

#Facebook uses your phone number for 2FA to better target you with propaganda advertising #NoTrust

Facebook uses your security questions and security data such as your two-factor authentication phone number as yet another way to scoop up data about you, including using the phone number to link you to data stored in friend’s contact lists, over which you have no control.

TripAdvisor has credibility problems

TripAdvisor has credibility problems

The problem with user generated content web sites -a.k.a. social media – is that much of the content is fake, incorrect or even fraudulent. TripAdvisor has a history of censoring bad reviews while letting businesses write fake bad reviews of their competitors.

This is genuine and not faked reporting – Anderson Cooper was intentionally showing the dangers of unseen drop offs in flood waters

This is genuine and not faked reporting – Anderson Cooper was intentionally showing the dangers of unseen drop offs in flood waters

This image does not show what people think it shows. CNN’s Anderson Cooper was moving around in the water to illustrate the dangers of unseen drop offs in flood waters. I’ve seen clips of the original that show this is what he was doing and this was not “fake news”. The original broadcast occurred after Hurricane Ike. This Internet meme illustrates how an instantaneous, moment in time still image loses all context – and can be readily repurposed into a propaganda message.

Staged photos used to illustrate a “news” story

Staged photos used to illustrate a “news” story

The way to respond to accusations of fictional news reporting is to double down on accuracy, objectivity and remaining calm. Unfortunately, the news industry continues to harm itself through self destructive behavior typical of middle school drama. Here, an online magazine staged their photos to accompany an interview, down to providing the clothing worn by the subject being interviewed.

Facebook to “fact check” photos, propaganda posters and videos

Facebook to “fact check” photos, propaganda posters and videos

Facebook to “fact check” photos, propaganda posters and videos – but how accurate is their “fact checking”, and what happens when Facebook fact checkers must apply subjective interpretation? There is a risk that Facebook will become the arbiter of truth, and due to a false positive problem, turn fake facts into true facts.

Journalism is dead, Part 2

Journalism is dead, Part 2

Weather Channel actor Mike Siedel, who plays the role of a journalist and meteorologist, is shown faking a live TV shot. Former NBC News actress Michelle Kosinski, who played the role of a journalist on NBC News is caught canoeing in a flooded street – having just inches of water. Journalism is dead due to death by self inflicted wounds. Sadly, there is no way for a news consumer to know if their news source is reliable or trustworthy as all major news outlets have been caught making significant errors.

Journalism appears to be dead

Journalism appears to be dead

NY Times largely retracts an article by Gardiner Harris as it was literally a fictional hit piece that would earn an F in a college class (but probably an A in creative journalism school). In the end, the egg is on his own face.

Google’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week

Google’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week

The week started off with an internal Google email from a high level manager describing how Google worked behind the scenes to attempt to get Clinton elected in 2016. A few days later, an internal Google meeting video appeared, showing executives behaving oddly, to say the least, after the 2016 election went for Trump, and suggesting that Google would uses its resources to manipulate voters to achieve Google’s desired outcomes. Ouch.