by Marty Poehler
Carol Cadwaladr, a British feature writer for The Observer, had her face crudely photoshopped onto another person’s in an online video showing that person being repeatedly assaulted on a flight – to discredit her work. You can change the words that a person in a video says and put it online – to make them say what they never said. Russians on Social Media organized competing demonstrations in America during the 2016 U.S. Election to sow discord – without people knowing it was Russians doing the organizing. Untruths or misleading statements targeted millions of British people on Facebook in a successful attempt to convince them to vote to leave the European Union.
Fox News tells its viewers certain things, and guides them along certain lines. MSNBC News tells its viewers certain other things and guides its viewers to lean a certain way.
Can we afford to take at face value what we are told on social media, and take as truth and accept what we see on regular news? Can we believe what they tell us? Can we believe what we say we believe?
Or – do we need to start using our minds to discern what’s true and what isn’t, and use our critical thinking to weed out lies from truth? Do we need to look at news from both sets of News and Social Media Outlets – both Left and Right – to find out FOR OURSELVES what is true and what isn’t? Because, as Ms. Cadwalladr said in the recently released “The Big Hack” on Netflix: “Things are not what they appear.”
It’s crucial if freedom and civilized society are to continue — that we grasp the importance of this exact moment – and THINK AND ACT our way out of this mess. Standing pat now is no longer an option – though many would wish to convince us that it is