In 2017, the main sources of fake news generated on the internet were as simple as inaccurate Facebook and Twitter posts written by an average user. But why would fake news spread more than real news? According to Soroush Vosoughi, Deb Roy, and Sin…
I think it’s vitally important to remember that technology is an amplifier for human behavior. It doesn’t intrinsically make us better or worse, simply allows us to act out our human nature faster and at scale.
Historian Richard Langworth looked into the history behind the saying “A lie will get halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on.” He found that the phrase dates back to at least FDR’s Secretary of State, Cordell Hull, sometime around 1948.
Pre-Twitter or Internet, the idea that lies spread like wildfire was true. It’s true today, and most likely, it’ll be true in 100 years.
I think the next challenge of the digital age isn’t how we continue amplifying ourselves. It’s how can we make ourselves better humans. Can we become more skeptical of disinformation? Can we develop more literacy around information consumption from any channel? Can we become more empathetic to someone who doesn’t look or act like us?
I don’t believe that those questions are something that can be solved by a new platform or device. It’s a project that humankind has been working at for a long time and something we’ll each have to address on a personal level before it improves.