In a touching true story, the remains of USAF Capt. Roy Knight, lost over Laos in 1967, were finally returned home on board a Southwest Airlines flight – crewed by his son, Capt. Bryan Knight. The story stands by itself. But oddly, the reporter felt compelled to throw in an ending paragraph of negativity. Why? I have no idea. But this seems common place – as if we must always spin the story, preferably with outrage.
Answer: His mother in law died and left them a very large inheritance. There is no conspiracy theory or grand mystery or element of corruption involved.
Twitter permits widespread tweets and use of the hashtag #killyourself. Amazing.
In the wake of violent mass murder events in recent weeks, there are instant media analyses that these actions are due to lax gun laws, video games, mental health problems or social media influence. There is an undercurrent that more surveillance of social media can make accurate automated diagnoses of psychiatric disorders and predict people’s future actions. There does not appear to be evidence that more invasive surveillance and artificial intelligence-based analysis would have meaningful impact on these problems. But this is becoming the predominant propaganda message now spreading through the media
Only 8 left in stock? Bogus claim to urge you to “Buy now!” “Sale ends soon!” after which the sale continues forever. “25 people just viewed this hotel room” – nope, that’s a random number to get you to “jump on the bandwagon” and act quickly.
Twitter has been leaking personal information to 3rd parties for a year. Twitter has also been making “inferences” or assumptions about each of us to aid in targeted advertising. In my own case, Twitter and Facebook have both made false inferences – yet they use these false assumptions to target ads – and presumably to curate our news feeds. We only see what Twitter and Facebook wants us to see – which is literally machine driven propaganda.
The noise level on Twitter greatly exceeds the signal, as their content has become overrun with meanness, falsehoods and outrage. This is not good for anyone’s mental health. I have no idea when or if I will log in again after the events of this past week.
A minor school yard tussle, not even worthy of a local news story becomes a national news report. This is not a national news story. This is “pseudo news” reporting that wastes our time with click-bait emotional content.
And for what its worth, its identical to something that happened to me at age 11. Then I was recovering from a skull fracture when a boy threw a football that hit me in the head, right along the fracture line. This was not local news. This was not national news. In fact, it wasn’t even news with in my school. But today, we’d be on cable news 24 x 7 …
An incredibly lengthy news article spins a story that a top athlete and scholar’s death, due to suicide, is likely due to the increasing pressure on young women to accomplish great things. 10 pages into this 14 page, single spaced news article, does the author mention she had suffered a brain injury just prior to her suicide, and even that mention goes into less detail than contemporary news reports shortly after her death. (I have had multiple and serious TBI’s myself, which is why I found the reporting on this terribly sad story to be a rambling odyssey that seemingly wanted to avoid reality.)
Interesting and well stated comments on the power of large tech companies to control our democracy as most public discourse now takes place via online forums.
Researchers looked at Youtube videos about climate change and found that a very large proportion are basically conspiracy theory videos (example – claiming jets are spewing “chem trails” to modify the climate and control the population). The researchers, in turn, advocate use of Youtube for “science communication” efforts, apparently unaware that another study found most science communications is now tied to political motives – in other words, propaganda messaging.
Bottom line is that Youtube is no different than Facebook and Twitter in that all are frictionless platforms for propaganda dissemination.
Reuters is called out this week for leaving out critically important details from their photo (cropped) and text description.
Snopes falls for it again and fact checks a satirical web site that prominently says it is “Fake news you can trust”. Seriously Snopes?
NY Daily News writes about the Apollo 11 mission and landing on the moon and gets nearly everything about it wrong.