Tag Archives: fake news

Quick: What’s The Difference Between Fake News and Hypernormalisation? by Mark E. Jeftovic

The coronavirus outbreak has given governments another excuse to protect us from news they don’t like. From Mark E. Jeftovic at axisofeasy.com:

Before the current Coronavirus pandemic, the Canadian government took delivery of the Broadband Telecom Legislative Review.  The 235-page report offered 97 recommendations for revamping internet and broadcasting oversight, most of them bad ones. Among them were provisions for requiring all content creators to obtain a license for operating from the government and “discoverability provisions” to force major tech platforms to emphasize “credible sources of news” over others (what the government calls “Approved Media”).

I wrote an article about it at the time and tabled a petition into the House of Commons to call on the government to reject BTLR in it’s entirety (still open, so please sign and share). More recently the Internet Society Canada Chapter (of which I’m a board member) submitted a point-for-point critique of the framework (it’s not on the site yet, will link when it is).

Shortly after that the government-funded CBC marshalled a gaggle of “Approved Media” in Canada (no doubt one of entities who will receive part of that $600,000,000 subsidy package announced in the run up to the last election) to call forth the government to legislate “trusted sources” of news…..

If you’re with me so far, the logic flows like this:

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Should You Hate The Media? by Bill O’Reilly

This looks like a fairly standard alternative media rant, but consider the source. From Bill O’Reilly at billoreilly.com:

Should You Hate the Media?
1975 was an exciting time to be at Boston University’s School of Public Communication. There we were, about 30 students seeking a Master’s Degree in Broadcast Journalism.  All of us thought our quest was noble, that we would become purveyors of truth, skilled fact-finders and truth-tellers in the Watergate tradition. The lessons presented were well worth the tens of thousands of dollars I had to pay for them.
Forty-five years later, having reached the top of my profession, I generally despise my own industry, something I never could have predicted.  Here’s why.
The national TV press is presently controlled by six major corporations that use their vast power to profiteer while attempting to destroy ideological enemies. The coverage of Donald Trump’s presidency has proved that statement beyond any reasonable doubt.
The stage was set early when a New York Times columnist wrote that because Mr. Trump was so loathsome (to him and his liberal colleagues), the basic tenets of fair journalism no longer applied.  Get Trump was the new rule.

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On the 70th anniversary of Orwell’s death: The danger of third parties “curating” and “fact checking” our info, by Sharyl Attkisson

There are all sorts of official, semi-official, and private busybodies who want to protect us from “fake news.” We’re all just too stupid to sort through it on our own. From Sharyl Attkisson at sharylattkisson.com:

Political writer George Orwell, who died Jan. 21, 1950

It is a dangerous practice: Government, corporations, universities, news outlets and “experts” curating our information so that we cannot access, see or believe that which they determine we should not access, see or believe.

If anyone had suggested to Orwell, or the American founders, that we would invite this sort of manipulation and control of our information, they wouldn’t have believed it.

The idea was first introduced on the national stage by President Obama in October of 2016 right before the presidential election. He insisted that somebody needed to step in and “curate” our information in the “Wild, Wild West” internet environment.

Nobody had been clamoring for any such thing.

So the challenge for those who came up with this bright idea– in my opinion in an effort to control news and information– was to convince the public to accept something very un-American: their information being shaped and censored by others.

Watch Attkisson’s Tedx talk: Astroturf and Manipulation of Media Messages

This feat was accomplished in concert with the anti-fake news effort, started in September 2016 through a nonprofit called First Draft. (First Draft was funded by Google, owned by Alphabet, run by Eric Schmidt, a major Hillary Clinton funder and supporter.) The anti-fake news effort was also an effort by special interests to step in and control news and internet information.

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Why the World Needs a Google Detox, by Joseph Mercola

The strong minds that read SLL have nothing to worry about, but Google is trying to brainwash the weak-minded. From Joseph Mercola at lewrockwell.com:

In this interview, Google whistleblower Zach Vorhies, who worked as a senior software engineer at Google and YouTube for over eight years, shares his inside knowledge of this global monopoly, revealing why Google is not a reliable source of information anymore.

Google’s monopoly over search is matched by a continued reassurance that it is an unbiased search platform.  Google is actively suppressing and censoring information, proving it is anything but unbiased.

While some of the information revealed is related to politics, you can read about my views about the two-party U.S. federal government here.

The point of sharing this information is that Google is manipulating search results to reflect its views, and to influence our social behavior while denying this is happening.

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Journalists Are Prostitutes, by Paul Craig Roberts

This article will dispel any lingering doubts you may have had about mainstream journalists being in bed with governments and intelligence agencies. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:

In a recent interview with USA Watchdog — https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2019/10/13/if-impeach-gate-fails-elites-will-crash-economy-to-get-rid-of-trump/ — I described Western journalists as prostitutes who whore for a living.  

One of them who did so—Udo Ulfkotte—describes what it is like.  For the naive and insouciant Western people who need to hear the truth from the horse’s mouth, here is a translation of one of Udo Ulfkotte’s lectures on the subject.

Kopp in Germany published Ulfkotte’s book, Gekaufte Journalisten (Bought Journalism) several years ago.  It was a best seller.  An English language edition was authorized, but its publication was blocked by intelligence services.  You can get an idea of the book from the lecture.

https://off-guardian.org/2019/10/06/watch-udo-ulfkotte-bought-journalists/?fbclid=IwAR3ytfusLpB3zA42m6vlDgbj8TpFlDuFoy1P11e8zqS8IuUOFlbz_48QfnA 

If the link doesn’t work for you, here is the transcript:

In 2014, the German journalist and writer Udo Ulfkotte published a book that created a big stir, describing how the journalistic profession is thoroughly corrupt and infiltrated by intelligence services.

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How the Fourth Estate Illuminati Silences the Right, by Leesa K. Donner

The more the mainstream media and the big social media outfits try to stifle non-approved political views, the stronger the alternative media gets. It’s thriving because it delivers something an increasing number of people want: skepticism of official story lines, hard-hitting analysis, provocative questions, and something closer to the truth. From Leesa K. Donner at libertynation.com:

Journalism has taken quite a beating since the turn of the century. This is true on the business side of the equation and regarding its reputation as a non-biased source of information. The adversarial relationship between the president and the Fourth Estate has not dissipated since Donald J. Trump was sworn in on Jan. 20, 2017. And a good argument could be made that it’s gotten even more ugly in the public square. This war of words has turned into an all-out frontal assault on those the legacy press perceives as its enemy: the political right. So, it’s worth checking in on the state of the battle. Who’s winning? Who’s losing? And perhaps more significantly: How effectively is the war being waged?

The Bloody Inkwell

It’s not difficult to determine who is being targeted. The legacy press has set its sights on the right, but within that category the Illuminati are gunning for three types of adversaries: well-known conservative individuals, large and small organizations, and public citizens. As for the how, the big-city scribes have chosen the sniper attack as their primary operational-tactical strategy. That is, establish a cover position, lie in wait, and pick off the enemy one by one.

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The Pentagon Wants More Control Over the News. What Could Go Wrong? by Matt Taibbi

The biggest whoppers, the most egregious “fake news.” comes from governments, so when the powerful Pentagon takes an interest in combatting “fake news,” it’s a sure thing that the Defense Department isn’t after the truth. From Matt Taibbi at rollingstone.com:

If there’s a worse idea than the Pentagon becoming Editor-in-Chief of America, I can’t remember it. But we’re getting there:

From Bloomberg over Labor Day weekend:

Fake news and social media posts are such a threat to U.S. security that the Defense Department is launching a project to repel “large-scale, automated disinformation attacks,” as the top Republican in Congress blocks efforts to protect the integrity of elections.

One of the Pentagon’s most secretive agencies, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is developing “custom software that can unearth fakes hidden among more than 500,000 stories, photos, video and audio clips.”

Once upon a time, when progressives still reflexively distrusted the military, DARPA was a liberal punchline, known for helping invent the Internet but also for developing lunatic privacy-invading projects like LifeLog, a program to “gather in a single place just about everything an individual says, sees, or does.”

DARPA now is developing a semantic analysis program called “SemaFor” and an image analysis program called “MediFor,” ostensibly designed to prevent the use of fake images or text. The idea would be to develop these technologies to help private Internet providers sift through content.

It’s the latest in a string of stories about new methods of control over information flow that should, but for some reason do not, horrify every working journalist.

From the Senate dragging Internet providers to the Hill to demand strategies against the sowing of “discord,” to tales of hundreds of Facebook sites zapped for “coordinated inauthentic behavior” following advice by government-connected groups like the Atlantic Council, it’s been clear the future of the information landscape is going to involve elaborate new forms of algorithmic regulation.

Stories about the need for such technologies are always couched as responses to the “fake news” problem. Unfortunately, “fake news” is a poorly-defined, amorphous concept that the public has been trained to fear without really understanding.

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Humans Are Creating Their Own Narratives, by Michael Krieger

What scares the powers that be the most is the thought of millions of information sources and communications that they cannot control. From Michael Krieger at libertyblitzkrieg.com:

Somewhere between the arrest of Jeffrey Epstein and his extremely suspicious death in a Department of Justice operated prison, the public learned that an FBI intelligence bulletin published by the bureau’s Phoenix field office mentioned for the first time that conspiracy theories pose a domestic terrorism threat. This was followed up last week by a Bloomberg article discussing a new project by the U.S. military (DARPA) to identify fake news and disinformation.

We learned:

Fake news and social media posts are such a threat to U.S. security that the Defense Department is launching a project to repel “large-scale, automated disinformation attacks,” as the top Republican in Congress blocks efforts to protect the integrity of elections.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency wants custom software that can unearth fakes hidden among more than 500,000 stories, photos, videos and audio clips. If successful, the system after four years of trials may expand to detect malicious intent and prevent viral fake news from polarizing society.

Recall that after the 2016 election, focus was on social media companies and we saw tremendous pressure placed on these platforms by national security state politicians and distressed Democrats to “do something” about the supposed fake news epidemic. Fast forward three years and it’s now apparently the U.S. military’s job to police human content on the internet. This is the sort of natural regression a society will witness so long as it puts up with incremental censorship and the demonization of any thought which goes agains the official narrative.

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U.S. Unleashes Military to Fight Fake News, Disinformation, by Pete Norman

There’s nothing disconcerting at all about having the military play an active role in the government’s disinformation and propaganda effort. From Pete Norman at bloomberg.com via news.yahoo.com:

(Bloomberg) — Fake news and social media posts are such a threat to U.S. security that the Defense Department is launching a project to repel “large-scale, automated disinformation attacks,” as the top Republican in Congress blocks efforts to protect the integrity of elections.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency wants custom software that can unearth fakes hidden among more than 500,000 stories, photos, video and audio clips. If successful, the system after four years of trials may expand to detect malicious intent and prevent viral fake news from polarizing society.

“A decade ago, today’s state-of-the-art would have registered as sci-fi — that’s how fast the improvements have come,” said Andrew Grotto at the Center for International Security at Stanford University. “There is no reason to think the pace of innovation will slow any time soon.”

U.S. officials have been working on plans to prevent outside hackers from flooding social channels with false information ahead of the 2020 election. The drive has been hindered by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s refusal to consider election-security legislation. Critics have labeled him #MoscowMitch, saying he left the U.S. vulnerable to meddling by Russia, prompting his retort of “modern-day McCarthyism.”

Risk Factor

President Donald Trump has repeatedly rejected allegations that dubious content on platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Google aided his election win. Hillary Clinton supporters claimed a flood of fake items may have helped sway the results in 2016.

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Fake News After Mueller, by Raúl Ilargi Meijer

We’re still waiting for the major organs of the mainstream media to apologize about Russiagate and vow to change their ways. From Raúl Ilargi Meijer at theautomaticearth.com:

Allow me to start with a question: Has anyone seen any of the main newspapers and networks who went after Donald Trump for 3 years accusing him of colluding with “the Russians”, apologize to either Trump, or to their readers and viewers, for spreading all that fake news now that Robert Mueller said none of that stuff was real, that they all just made it up?

I’ve seen only one such apology, albeit a very good and thorough one, from Sharyl Attkisson for The Hill. But one is a very meager harvest of course. With over 500,000 articles on collusion published on the topic, as Axios said -leading to 245 million social media ‘interactions’, shouldn’t there be more apologies, if only so people can hold on to their faith in US media for a while longer?

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