Last week, wepublished documents that definitively debunked and disproved a claim that numerous media outlets had circulated and affirmed for years: that Edward Snowden lied about where he was during his first 11 days in Hong Kong. Contrary to the fable these outlets dispensed to their readers — that Snowden did not check in to the Mira Hotel on May 21 as he claimed but only did so on June 1, 11 days later — these new documents, obtained from the Mira, prove that Snowden arrived there exactly when he always said, rendering their published stories factually false. Many of these stories had even claimed that anonymous U.S. investigators were unable to find hotel or credit card records for Snowden during these 11 days — exactly the records we just published.
Publishing used to be relatively simple. You published a newspaper once a day or produced a nightly newscast. Even with the advent of the Internet things were fairly straightforward: You had a website and posted your coverage there. But as platforms — from Facebook and Snapchat to messaging platforms such as Kik and Line — become more ubiquitous, news organizations now have to decide where they want to publish and how they want to present their coverage on these platforms.
It’s become popular to criticize mainstream media outfits. The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, CNN, and others have all recently come under fire by Trump cabinet members. Steve Bannon, former Breitbart chairman and current White House Chief Strategist, even went so far as to refer to mainstream media as “the opposition party.” Trump himself seems to employ similar rationale. The thinking is simple: if the coverage is unfavorable, it’s fake. If it’s touting the excellent job Trump and his cronies are doing in Washington, then that’s where you can find this mythical creation the White House deems to be a
A range of solutions – including stronger independent media organisations – is going to be needed.
At the UN, Colin Powell holds a model vial of anthrax, while arguing that Iraq is likely to possess WMDs, 2003. Wikicommons/ United States Government. Some rights reserved.Last week, Facebook made a significant intervention into the debate around ‘fake news’, trialling a new feature (for now, just in the US) which both alerts users when an article they are trying to share has been disputed by fact checkers, and appends a disclaimer if the user decides to share it.
All-out interview with Viktor Ivančić, one of the founders of the legendary weekly Feral Tribune. The media in Croatia, the Balkans, and former Yugoslavia. The risks for democracy
Are you tired of doubting information from the news media? Fed up with America’s public institutions?
The growing stream of reporting on and data about fake news, misinformation, partisan content, and news literacy is hard to keep up with. This weekly roundupoffers the highlights of what you might have missed.
Feel-good fake news: Following Wednesday’s terrorist attack in London, an image of a Tube sign has gone viral:
— Jim Edwards (@Jim_Edwards) March 23, 2017