Why Are European Governments So Terrified of ‘Fake News’? by Judith Bergman

Governments are terrified of “fake news” because it competes with their own propaganda. From Judith Bergman at gatestoneinstitute.org:

  • When Swedish authorities representing a Swedish left-wing government and media announce a project to prevent “fake news” from “decisively influencing” the 2018 elections, this ought to set off loud alarm bells among Swedes. Who determines what constitutes “fake news” anyway? Is it not the very essence of “fake news” when a media outlet refuses to report mass sexual assaults, because the perpetrators happen to be foreigners from third world countries?
  • A British Cabinet Office spokesperson told Sky News: “The Government is committed to tackling false information and the Government Communications Service plays a crucial role in this”. Perhaps their “rapid response fake news unit” should begin with Theresa May herself, who falsely and against all factual evidence continues to claim that Islam is a religion of peace and that ISIS is not Islamic.
  • Meanwhile, European citizens continue to face costly legal prosecution for refusing to accept the fake news about Islam propagated by people such as Theresa May.
  • “I also thought that Islam was just a normal religion, but then I read the Koran and became shocked by the hatred that exists there, the misogyny… The more Islam takes over, the more we compromise. Islam is a totalitarian ideology, which means dictatorship. So, I believe that our democratic system is in danger… I hate no people. What I hate is ideology, Islam. One can criticize fascism or Nazism, but why not Islam? Why should Islam have any protection status?” — Denny, on trial in Sweden for “incitement to hatred” for calling Islam “a fascist ideology” on Facebook. If found guilty, he faces up to two years in prison.

The Swedish government’s innovation agency, Vinnova, is financing a project led by the combined forces of Swedish mainstream media to, in the words of Vinnova, “prevent fake news and unfounded statements from spreading and playing a decisive role in the Swedish elections in 2018”. The next elections, which take place every four years, are scheduled to take place on September 9, 2018. The Swedish media giants involved in the project consist of Swedish State Television, Swedish State Radio, Bonnier, Schibsted Sverige, and NTM. Together, these media companies effectively own Swedish mainstream media in the form of newspapers, online news outlets, and state and private television and radio. The Swedish state is financing the technical aspects of the project with 1.9 million Swedish kroner ($240,000), while the Swedish mainstream media is financing the remaining project costs themselves. The “fake news” project was originally launched in October 2017.

To continue reading: Why Are European Governments So Terrified of ‘Fake News’?

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