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Month: January 2020

Mass hysteria: Delusions of drone sightings

Mass hysteria: Delusions of drone sightings

The FAA and other officials, using high tech gear, are unable to locate any drones among the media reports of unknown drones cruising over the skies of Colorado, then Nebraska, and now California and North Carolina. This post includes a listing of numerous well publicized drone sightings, alleged near misses and collisions that turned out to have never occurred. But such wide spread publicity led to mass hysteria, which is itself a technique of propaganda messaging.

State of Colorado says no evidence of criminal activity, finds evidence of people confusing stars, planets and toys as a drone fleet in the sky.

Social media: Are fewer and fewer people posting Tweets?

Social media: Are fewer and fewer people posting Tweets?

Twitter is randomly inserting tweets from people I do not follow and this seems to be increasing. That suggests fewer and fewer people may be posting content on Twitter, or at least posting less. In order to continue providing content and making it look like Twitter is being used, Twitter’s algorithm is inserting more random Tweets from people we do not follow.

Journalism: It’s all 24×7 rage, says former NBC TV Anchor

Journalism: It’s all 24×7 rage, says former NBC TV Anchor

Tom Brokaw, former NBC TV news anchor, now retired, notes that today’s media (and culture) has devolved to 24 x 7 rage, or what I call, “The culture of perpetual outrage”. He has several very good observations and comments. Social media frequently takes its cues from media. Thus, the rage and bitterness that has become common in the media gets amplified by sharing and discussion – or may be just shouting – on social media.

Begging the Question Fallacy: Boeing, after showing us who they are, says this is not who they are

Begging the Question Fallacy: Boeing, after showing us who they are, says this is not who they are

After Boeing’s internal records show employees criticizing the safety of the 737 MAX, Boeing insists “this is not who we are”. This is known as the “begging the question” fallacy, which is to assert that something is true, in spite of actual events, and assert everyone agrees with this. This method is extremely common in corporate and government propaganda efforts.

Journalism: A realistic portrayal of the Australian wildfires scope

Journalism: A realistic portrayal of the Australian wildfires scope

The graphic shows the equivalent square miles to the acreage burned in Australian wildfires. Its a huge mess of fires but this provides tremendous context to the scope. ABC (US) News ran a graphic implying that about one third of Australia was on fire 🙂 The accurate portrayal, in this Google Map, was created by the San Francisco Chronicle.

Update January 10, 2020: 1.1% of Australia’s land mass has burned, 98.9% has not yet burned. This compares to 15% of Australia’s total land mass burning in the summer of 1974-1975.

Journalism: CNN settles lawsuit with Nick Sandmann

Journalism: CNN settles lawsuit with Nick Sandmann

CNN and many media outlets falsely reported on a confrontation that occurred in Washington DC in January 2019. The media had the story backwards, reversed from what actually occurred, with many media outlets falsely accusing students of racism. Today, CNN has settled the lawsuit filed against them. Several related lawsuits remain pending.