Wednesday, January 11, 2017
What is real and what is fake? That is the question in our modern world where we are surrounded by so much information and it's simply impossible to know what is real and what is not.
The old, reliable and most respectable news sources in the United States all had polls show that Hillary Clinton winning while online websites that were being trashed for months as showing fake news had polls showing Donald Trump winning.
In hindsight who was real and who was fake? Did the old and reliable news sources show real polls or did they manipulate them in some way or other to try to influence the outcome of the election?
It doesn't matter who a person supported for president - the issue is - if the news sources are proven wrong again and again and again can we continue to trust them?
In the past, editors would choose what would make the front page of the newspaper and become the national discussion of the day and op eds by famous thinkers in the important newspapers would be one of the most important way to influence the discussion.
But perhaps the problem isn't with any newspapers. Perhaps newspapers have always mixed real and fake news to try to influence their readers rather than just report the news.
Perhaps the discussion of fake news is simply the last hurrah of a dying elephant called mainstream news.
The online world has democratized news. Even I that loves news, find myself learning more about the world outside my own not by any major news source these days but mostly from Facebook and by interesting articles my friends post.
Since all the large mainstream media have been caught bluntly lying so many times in recent years - I find myself trusting the random commentary of my friends on facebook much more than I trust any op ed anywhere.
Humans like all animals have a strong instinct to be free - and all humans, at the end of the day, want to feel they are above anything else free thinkers.
Humans need to feel their information is real and that they as free thinkers are making up the decisions about their own opinions in a free way after weighting both sides.
But in a world where both the left and the right wing mainstream media are constantly caught lying - it seems - it will be the people's court on Facebook and other social media that will become even more important in the future than now - as the place where people will not only learn about the news but also make up their mind about it.
And as always, corporate America is feeling the beat of the people as fast as it changes and moving it's ad dollars from the dying corporate media that is becoming less and less relevant to us to the social networks - trying to figure out how to influence us also there.
Cause unlike the news about politics that takes years from any decision that is made to each and every one of us actually feeling it -
Corporations at the end of the day - want our money now. They want us to buy their soda, jeans, sneakers, health, happiness, car or lifestyle.
So they need to figure out what's real for us - so they can persuade us in that reality we trust as real that we need their products to make our life better.
I think people in our 21st century - have evolved beyond fake or real news - perhaps it is all entertainment and it is all just a backdrop for selling us something.
Perhaps that is the biggest change of people 2.0 - that for kids growing up with cell phones - they understand everything is a market - and everyone's just trying to sell you an app - politicians, non profits, journalists, your friends showing their latest pictures from their awesome party or vacations, soda companies - it's all the same. It's a sellers world. It's all just as real as it is fake.
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