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Thread: I think fake news is good

  1. Top | #21
    Contributor skepticalbip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrZoidberg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post

    Are you saying that the political faction you personally prefer only slants its "news" while the political faction you oppose only makes up its "news" from whole cloth?

    Have you considered that maybe you have been swayed by the propagandists of one side more than the propagandists of the other?
    I think everybody is about as guilty of this. I go out of my way to read news from other sources than Liberal sources. Just to challenge my own biases.

    But Pizzagate was created by trolls on 4Chan. They made no secret about it. It was an exercise in proving how gullible people are. That clearly qualifies as fake news
    I don't deny that there are blatant lies. In fact that is what I maintained. I am saying that there are blatant lies from both factions... our difference seems to be that you appear to only see it from one faction. The problem is that there are people who believe the lies promoted by the propagandists of their faction and don't believe the biased reports (they see as blatant lies) or lies from the opposing faction.

    If you or anyone else does not think that the faction you favor doesn't present blatant falsehoods as 'news' then your propagandists have done a good job at fooling their target audience.

    Examples:
    ..Pizzagate (completely fabricated) was believed by many on the right.

    .."Trump was an agent of Puten's" (completely fabricated) was believed by many on the left.

    ETA:
    But all this is my real problem with the 'news'. It has become primarily political propaganda, character assassination. I think news should be about what is happening in the world not what one political group thinks of another political group.

  2. Top | #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrZoidberg View Post
    I've completely swung around on this issue. I think fake news is good. I don't think it ruins anything. What it does it highlights the basic problem with explaining stuff. You have to remove information when describing anything, or it'll be an unmanageable mess of facts. All news, or any story, will in some sense or another always be a lie. Because it has filtered out information the speaker doesn't think is important, for whatever reason.

    The existence of large amounts of fake news makes us think much more critically about what we are reading. The world is messy and contradictory. It's always been.

    It's so easy to think that back in the olden days (pre-Internet news) news was accurate. Nope. It was pretty shit then to. It was just less of it, so we couldn't verify anything.

    What has changed is that quality print media is losing revenue so has to turn to churning out small articles with juicy headlines to chase clicks, rather than fewer well researched pieces. But that's not necessarily evil. It's an evolution. For businessmen and investors getting an accurate description of the world is critical. It's a question of survival for them. So they'll always pay for accurate news. So it won't disappear. It'll just be differently packaged. However that packaging ends up looking like.

    I think in the long run the existence and spread of fake news will lead to an environment of more good ideas being spread and talked about. Which has always been good in general. The economist Richard Florida has done a lot of research on a culture of tolerance for weird ideas and wealth generation. There's a strong correlation.

    I think people who call for regulation of news and wanting some government agency validate it for them is essentially wanting to go back to world of predominantly comforting lies. A world where the mess and chaos of life is hidden. But that's the illusion. That was always the illusion.

    Here's my prediction. We'll see the rise of resources like Snopes. They'll be imbedded in our news sources. Just like Google translate asks if you want to translate a web page, we'll get a configurable service to validate a pieces truth value. Some AI will rate it according to an algorithm telling us that something is 89% true and it's up to us to decide if it's good enough.

    I think that in the long run the rise of fake news will only be seen as a good thing. A transition to a new and better more well informed world. We'll look back in horror at the deluded 20'th century where even the countries with a free press swallow mostly bullshit all day.

    Yay for fake news!
    I wanted to confirm I didn't break into Dr. Zoidberg's account and post this.

  3. Top | #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DrZoidberg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post

    The problem with the identification of "fake news" is that people have become so partisan in their thinking that they see anything that favors the opposing partisan side as not true or 'fake news' so give it no consideration. It is kinda a propogandists dream. The left has come to assume that anything from the right is a lie and the right has come to assume that anything from the left is a lie... and alternately, anything they hear from their side is true.
    Sure. You'll have no argument from me. I still think it's an improvement over what we had before. Which was being served comforting lies. At least this is glaring and obvious lies. I prefer the Wizard of Oz being visible, rather than hidden behind the curtain.
    News today is not news, it is political propaganda from both sides. What each political faction labels as 'fake news' is the propaganda of the other faction (but they accept as 'god's truth the propaganda from their faction)....
    This is so wrong, it makes one want to weep. Mr. Skeptical often impresses me as very intelligent; why has he fallen for the Tu Toque here? This misinformation only helps the Liars to continue to win.

    In fact the effort the R's devote to Lying, or BS more generally, is roughly ONE HUNDRED (100) times in quantity than the D's effort. (Charges of criminality against Trump et al clearly do not constitute BS or Lying If they are True.) At some point, the simple imbalance in the amount of BullShit is overwhelming and TuToque must be laughed at. What is that threshold? I don't know, but I should think that 100:1 is sufficiently large,

    Do both R's and D's utter bullshit? On a percent basis of time spent (Congressional hearing, campaign, op-eds — and ignoring banter on foreign affairs) here's how I see the R and D "thought" as presented,
    R:
    * 20 - exaggerating "issues" like Dr. Seuss
    * 20 - misleading near lies
    * 15 - egregious lies
    * 15 - slanders
    * 10 - non-egregious lies
    * 15 - sniveling
    * 5 - other, incl. policy
    In other words, about 95% of R utterances are Lies or otherwise worthless.

    D:
    * 10 - exposing Trumpist crimes and sins
    * 5 - refuting other R's daily lies
    * 10 - proposals for better policing, and hopefully improving race relations
    * 10 - proposals re: infrastructure, etc.
    * 5 - proposals re: education, internet, etc.
    * 15 - minimum wage, direct stimulus
    * 10 - tax policy
    * 15 - protection of voting rights
    * 10 - an implicit debate about values
    * 5 - protection from pandemic
    * 5 - other healthcare
    Yes, the D's spend 15% of their time revealing the lies, crimes, and sins of the R's, but these may serve a purpose. Or will Trump supporters still support their man if he's locked up in Sing Sing prison?
    But most importantly, Rachel Maddow wields TRUE facts in her indictment of R's,
    while counterparts like Fucker Carlson wield only LIES.

    Is not the divide vast? The R's focus almost solely on propaganda, mistruths and lies, mostly to impugn their political opponents. The D's utter mostly true facts and opinions, want to focus on real issues like healthcare or minimum wage, but are forced to devote considerable effort to combating R malice, e.g. voter suppression.

    What am I missing? I'll repeat my prior post, boldfacing the question I want to her Mr. Skeptical or Dr. Zoidberg answer.
    Quote Originally Posted by Swammerdami View Post
    My own ancestor was a newspaper publisher who self-described with "Give the people controversy. Have the courage to take sides on a question. Many people may then hate you but they always read what you have to say."

    Do Fox Potatoes listen to what Rachel Maddow has to say?

    It might behoove [to offer] examples of "fake news" uttered by Democrats.

    In the U.S., fake news includes the notion that Hillary Clinton runs a child sex ring out of the basement of a popular Washington pizzeria. Several Americans didn't "get the joke," since one showed up firing an assault rifle in the pizzeria! BTW, I see where Tucker Carlson's lawyer is now using the same defense Alex Jones used! — Carlson can't be guilty of lying or slander because his shows are obviously just comedy!

    ... the Fox Potatoes smart enough to know they're being lied to draw the wrong conclusion: that "the mainstream media" is lying just as bad as Fox. With facts defunct for many Americans, all that's left are opinions. All too often, opinions are themselves "fake" — they come from carnival barkers and pimps taking advantage of echo chambers.

    The idea that today's news "is an improvement over what we had before" is completely off-base, bewilderingly wrong.

  4. Top | #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post
    .."Trump was an agent of Puten's" (completely fabricated) was believed by many on the left.

    ETA:
    But all this is my real problem with the 'news'. It has become primarily political propaganda, character assassination. I think news should be about what is happening in the world not what one political group thinks of another political group.
    Oh my. I'd have thought this might have been covered already. Quick questions for bjp:
    * aware that the charge was of being an "asset", not an "agent." Y/N
    * aware that Putin did intervene to help Trump in 2016 and 2020, and that Trump was aware of this. Y/N
    * aware that Trump is heavily indebted to Russian financiers. Y/N
    * aware that Trump denied, against witnesses, staying in hotel that might have been a sort of honey-trap. Y/N

    Trump DID absolve Russia of crimes whose guilt U.S. intelligence was certain of. Trump DID meet with Putin with no other American present, not eben an interpreter.

    Never mind, Mr. Skeptical. If you call the idea that Trump was a useful asset for Russia to be "complete fabrication" then there's probably no chance either of us could inform the other.

  5. Top | #25
    Mazzie Daius fromderinside's Avatar
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    DrZoidberg On your claim humanity has never done better education I disagree.

    Take the US. Courts permit religion to be taught in public schools. Locals have advocated and gotten limits in science education, civics, and language.

    Public funding has been reduced at University making almost certain universities are dominated by rich elites or those educated are saddled with repayment loads basically reducing them to income levels of those not trained at all.

    Its becoming very difficult to introduce information accuracy and validity filters by which one could constrain misinformation merging with real information.

    Results are most avenues for noise reduction in the information channels or in those who filter information as it arrives are being further degraded by those who would misinform.

    On the other hand I am confident we can gain control over misinformation if only we attach profit or advantage to materially accurate information in the information marketplace.

    For instance if a platform rewards those who post verifiable and accurate information are rewarded for doing so in some way while those who can't get their stuff past the fib filters are punished in some way for a period of time I believe noise levels will reduce significantly toot sweet.

    Let me put it this way all information has consequences when communicated. Consequences can be measured and tracked. By taking the information received and the use of information received one can attach material metrics to such.

    Now if you aren't confident in the genetic model results of information transactions should lead to longer lives and better lives. If we are wrong then we're well on our way extinction. For me it's an easy bet.

    Seems to me fair that those who design platforms are entitled to control veracity of content on their platform since it is by providing accurate information one usually makes the most reliable bucks and does the most good for those who participate.

  6. Top | #26
    Contributor DrZoidberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fromderinside View Post
    DrZoidberg On your claim humanity has never done better education I disagree.

    Take the US. Courts permit religion to be taught in public schools. Locals have advocated and gotten limits in science education, civics, and language.

    Public funding has been reduced at University making almost certain universities are dominated by rich elites or those educated are saddled with repayment loads basically reducing them to income levels of those not trained at all.

    Its becoming very difficult to introduce information accuracy and validity filters by which one could constrain misinformation merging with real information.

    Results are most avenues for noise reduction in the information channels or in those who filter information as it arrives are being further degraded by those who would misinform.

    On the other hand I am confident we can gain control over misinformation if only we attach profit or advantage to materially accurate information in the information marketplace.

    For instance if a platform rewards those who post verifiable and accurate information are rewarded for doing so in some way while those who can't get their stuff past the fib filters are punished in some way for a period of time I believe noise levels will reduce significantly toot sweet.

    Let me put it this way all information has consequences when communicated. Consequences can be measured and tracked. By taking the information received and the use of information received one can attach material metrics to such.

    Now if you aren't confident in the genetic model results of information transactions should lead to longer lives and better lives. If we are wrong then we're well on our way extinction. For me it's an easy bet.

    Seems to me fair that those who design platforms are entitled to control veracity of content on their platform since it is by providing accurate information one usually makes the most reliable bucks and does the most good for those who participate.


    USA isn't the world. But even if it would be, you'd still be wrong. Even in USA the population is still better educated than ever before. The fact that the most of the top universities in the whole world are in USA isn't just a fluke.

    https://ourworldindata.org/global-education

    What you claim as evidence of a lack of education is in fact exactly what happens when people start getting educated.

    That's what this quote is about.

    "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing"
    /Alexander Pope

    Or to quote a doctor friend of mine

    "nurses are dangerous"

    People who learn a little bit about a subject think they know more than they really do. Humility kicks in when we're very knowledgeable about a topic. But only other experts are able to judge if they really are experts. Which is a dilemma.

    That means that when a population in a democratic country starts getting mass education we would expect government policies that are dumber. We get simple solutions for complicated problems. This is one of the most common modern arguments against democracy. It can go very wrong very quickly. At least democracies are self correcting over time.

    The fact that public funding of US universities have gone down won't inevitably lead to a fall in education in the wealthiest country on Earth. What it will lead to is inequality. But that's something different.

  7. Top | #27
    the baby-eater
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    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post
    News today is not news, it is political propaganda from both sides. What each political faction labels as 'fake news' is the propaganda of the other faction (but they accept as 'god's truth the propaganda from their faction). News in the mid 20th century actually contained some actual news but with the editorial slant of the paper's owners. People in the U.S. were actually informed of what was happening in the world outside the U.S.
    That still describes the state of the news today. If you pick out some more reputable news agencies, you'll find exactly what you described: news filtered through the editor's bias.

    Quote Originally Posted by skepticalbip View Post
    100 - 30 years ago (at least in the U.S.) newspapers were not all giving the same slant on the news. There were competing newspapers. I found it useful to read both a left leaning and a right leaning newspaper to try to figure out what really happened in any situation.
    30 years, ago, or even 15 years ago, there was no left-leaning newspaper in my state. We had two right-wing newspapers, both published by News Limited. For many people this was their primary means of learning about news around the state, country and the world. The problem was that the news was significantly filtered: the papers would pick and choose on how to report on current event in order to support the right wing narrative. This was supported by opinion columnists and "analysis" that argued for and against some thing or another. These papers are still the only print newspapers in circulation, the difference now is that one can access left-leaning news agencies online, and actually get a different view that often focuses on things that one might consider to be more important.

    For instance, these newspapers are gentle on conservative governments. They simply choose not to report facts that might damage voter confidence. The incumbent conservative government has had a number of scandals that have gone unreported in the papers, which means that a lot of people are completely oblivious to the nature and magnitude of these events. When the Labor party was in power, the newspapers enthusiastically and sensationally report on every allegation and rumour. (Some of that probably did qualify as fake news.) This gives people a very distorted view of the comparative competence and integrity of the two competing parties.

    But none of it is really "fake news". It's just reality filtered by a media mogul's political agenda. It's only "fake" in the sense that it leads people to make false conclusions, whether they are deciding which governments have been better at managing the economy, weighing up the costs of action vs. inaction regarding any given crisis.

  8. Top | #28
    the baby-eater
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    As for the whole "both sides" argument, I think the reality is more like "both sides, but predominantly a right wing phenomenon".

    Here's an app that attempts to chart the bias and reliability of selected news sources
    https://master.d3evik1g1chalw.amplifyapp.com/

  9. Top | #29
    Contributor DrZoidberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigfield View Post
    As for the whole "both sides" argument, I think the reality is more like "both sides, but predominantly a right wing phenomenon".

    Here's an app that attempts to chart the bias and reliability of selected news sources
    https://master.d3evik1g1chalw.amplifyapp.com/
    No. It's a lazy way for publicly funded European media to avoid being accused of taking sides. I think in most of Europe it is mandatory which can lead to pretty bizarre situations. And why in so many debate shows a priest is wheeled in, in spite of northern countries being secular to the extreme, and almost nobody gives a shit about what the priest has to say. It's a figleaf of impartiality.

    Swedish state media does this both sides stuff all the time in spite of being a non-stop leftist/liberal propaganda machine. They just make sure that the right wing guy invited is an absolute lunatic.

    I personally hate both sides of the story. I would prefer ideological biases stated upfront and their attempts to make their case as well as they can, seen from only that perspective. And leave it up to the viewer to find alternative perspectives. That's just my personal preference.

  10. Top | #30
    Mazzie Daius fromderinside's Avatar
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    Let me drop this one on you DrZoidberg.

    A PhD in economics is the only one worth getting

    https://qz.com/82743/a-phd-in-economics-is-the-only-one-worth-getting/


    It quickly illustrates what is wrong with education lumping when making argument.

    Incomes per large category like professional education income are masked by drivers such as economics and math/statistics. Physicists are a dime a dozen and we have thousands of excess in this and chemistry and most other scientific domains. Get an MBA, an Econ PHD, or Math PHD specializing in new statistical approaches and you go to heaven.

    It's just like average income. About a dozen trillionaires and the curve is useless.

    I expect plumbing and electrician drive contract and labor to be just as skewed are are science incomes.

    As for more leads to dumber it's actually more leads to dominance by the greedier. I got mine up yours.

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