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Category: Fiction News

Journalists fall for false meme, because they want it to be true?

Journalists fall for false meme, because they want it to be true?

The long time thesis of this blog is that social media is a frictionless platform for the spread of propaganda. In the “good old days”, propaganda required owning a printing press or broadcast license. Today, anyone can become a propagandist by posting an appropriate meme on social media and watch it shared thousands or millions of times. Journalists frequently use their personal accounts on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram (but especially Twitter) to share items of interest to themselves. Due to…

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Much news reporting is pure speculation, not actual reporting

Much news reporting is pure speculation, not actual reporting

I ran across a link to an old CNN Money financial news report from October 24, 2016. Every speculation made in this news report was wrong and illustrates how much “news” is not really reporting on events but is speculation about the future. One week before the 2016 Presidential election, CNN Money’s report is titled A Trump win would sink stocks. What about Clinton? by Heather Long   @byHeatherLong Key points: If Donald Trump wins, U.S. stocks – and likely…

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How social media propaganda can spread globally in minutes

How social media propaganda can spread globally in minutes

Dave Weigel is a politics reporter for the Washington Post. Recently he posted a photo of a mostly empty arena that was used for an event with the President, with the caption “Packed to the rafters” showing that the arena was not very full. He neglected to note that the photo was taken hours before the event was to begin. The event, in fact, had 1,000+ more attendees than seats in the arena and was filled. Weigel may have suffered…

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“News” is just entertaining gossip and “infotainment”

“News” is just entertaining gossip and “infotainment”

This may be the first of several posts on the degeneration of “news” into speculative, gossip-focused, entertaining drivel. They – and you – pretend you are being informed when in reality you are being entertained. At best your time is distracted from learning meaningful information and at worse you have become prey for propaganda messaging. Visit the web pages of various news sites and note the majority of their “headlines” are entertaining gossip stories. Yahoo News: “Vonn: Backlash shows ‘how…

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Full text of the comment that was shadow banned by @Oregonian newspaper

Full text of the comment that was shadow banned by @Oregonian newspaper

The next morning, my comment remains shadow banned by the Oregonian. Here is the description of the shadow ban, from last night with a screen capture of how the ban appears. Here, I present the full text of the shadow banned comment plus the supplementary information for how I obtained the facts presented in the comment. Here are actual price quotes from HealthCare.gov. The first quotes are for a 64 year old married couple earning pre-tax income of $65,000 per…

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Never, Ever leave a reporter in a room alone, with a number

Never, Ever leave a reporter in a room alone, with a number

Sheer idiocy to have written this: The “baby boom” is officially defined as those born from 1946 to 1964. Per the above, in the year 2060, the aging baby boomer population will be aged 96 to 114, and apparently life spans will have increased by decades by the year 2060. The study is not accessible to the public. The reporter who wrote this article and the editor who let this fly by are idiots. In a literal sense, the baby…

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Social media companies really do read your posts, emails and documents

Social media companies really do read your posts, emails and documents

Google’s GMail service “scans” your emails and Google Docs to serve you ads. The word “scans” implies scanning for keywords but that is a false assumption about what is actually being done. Natural language processing technology has advanced to where these algorithms are the equivalent of someone reading all of your emails and taking notes. Literally, online services are reading all of your email and building dossiers on what they think they know about you, ostensibly to better target advertising…

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Another example of fake news

Another example of fake news

This item appeared in my Facebook crap feed yesterday and linked to a supposed news report. I searched Google News and Bing News for reports about Jimmy Hoffa, “22 bodies”, and “Flint River” and neither returned any relevant stories related to this, a sure sign of creative fake news driving Likes, Shares and selling eye balls to advertisers. It just never ends, does it? Update: This is likely a creation of one of many Internet troll farms that we later…

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‘Fake news’ becomes a business model: researchers

‘Fake news’ becomes a business model: researchers

Is this fake news? Duh? Hello? I’ve been writing about this for a long time and researchers just notice that “fake news” is “a profitable business model”? Cyber criminals have latched onto the notion of “fake news” and turned it into a profitable business model, with services starting at under $10, security researchers said Thursday. The online security firm Digital Shadows released a report highlighting services aimed at creating bogus media Source: ‘Fake news’ becomes a business model: researchers Good…

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No, the “OK” Gesture Is Not a Hate Symbol

No, the “OK” Gesture Is Not a Hate Symbol

Has the simple thumb-and-forefinger “OK” hand gesture become a white supremacist hand sign? Source: No, the “OK” Gesture Is Not a Hate Symbol says the Anti-Defamation League. Another day, another Internet meme – this time claiming that people making a popular “Ok” symbol with their thumb and index finger are actually expressing a symbol for “white power”. This in turn has been used to publicly accuse people who display the “ok” symbol as clandestinely flashing a white power symbol. All thanks…

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Washington Post, Miami Herald, CBS, Vox, Buzzfeed sourced stories from Russian social media propaganda

Washington Post, Miami Herald, CBS, Vox, Buzzfeed sourced stories from Russian social media propaganda

Major US “news” publishers cited tweets now known to originate from propagandists in Russia as the source for their reporting. As you know, social media is always a reliable source for your news reports. Not. A legitimate question is why do all media now source content from unverifiable social media? From the Washington Post to the local TV news – all of them do this routinely. The mass media that relies on social media becomes a conduit in the propaganda…

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Avoid TripAdvisor.com? Online reviews were censored, worked as propaganda

Avoid TripAdvisor.com? Online reviews were censored, worked as propaganda

Update: TripAdvisor claimed to have apologized about deleting negative reviews but it turns out they lied about their apology: They had not apologized to the victim. One Senator is requesting the U.S. Federal Trade Commission to investigate TripAdvisor over their use of false reviews. TripAdvisor’s stock price fell this week from about $40/share to $31/share and one analyst is forecasting a $28/share price. In August, several analysts had forecast $44-$47 share prices for TRIP.   As noted previously, online reviews…

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