Saturday, December 24, 2016

Anne Applebaum: I understand the power of fake news, Russian-style; Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 12/24/16

Anne Applebaum, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; Anne Applebaum: I understand the power of fake news, Russian-style:
"...[T]his brings us to a deeper question, one that takes us beyond this ugly campaign and the possible Russian role in it: Why are Americans so vulnerable to fake news, even when generated by a hostile foreign power? Why do they consume it and pass it on?
The fault is partly that of the Republican Party, which told people for years to hate and fear “Washington” and has now created a constituency that actually prefers information generated by the Kremlin or white supremacists. The problem also lay with Hillary Clinton, who was hardly a trusted figure to begin with.
But it is also true that we are living through a global media revolution, that people are hearing and digesting political information in brand-new ways and that nobody yet understands the consequences. Fake stories are easier to create, fake websites can be designed to host them, and social media rapidly disseminate disinformation that people trust because they get it from friends."

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