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HomeOff Topics News & Politics › News Media - How do you approach it?
10-10-2018 09:23 PM  5 days agoPost 1
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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In an era where we have an overload of information, how do you digest it? What mechanism do you use to identify the fact from fiction?

In today's world, some traditional news outlets have abandoned journalism and adhere to a propaganda type agenda. We now have new non-traditional methods of publicizing news (blogs, vlogs, forums, memes, etc).

Do you ignore it all, do you believe it all, are you selective?

Anyway, just wondering your perspective and methods on approaching such beast

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10-10-2018 09:38 PM  5 days agoPost 2
tadawson

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Lewisville, TX

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Look for backing facts . . . If someone just said something, and there is no backing evidence or detail, it's likely BS . . . (see also "anonymous sources stated . . . " the ULTIMATE BS job!)

Friends don't let friends become electrotarded . . . .

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10-10-2018 09:45 PM  5 days agoPost 3
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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tadawson
Look for backing facts . . . If someone just said something, and there is no backing evidence or detail, it's likely BS . . . (see also "anonymous sources stated . . . " the ULTIMATE BS job!)
where do you look for such evidence / facts?

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10-10-2018 09:50 PM  5 days agoPost 4
RM3

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Killeen, Texas - USA

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this is an area that is very difficult to determine fact or fiction... we rely on others that claim to be stating the truth. If we look for more evidence, we then look online to other sources that we also trust to be truthful.

but today we are literally flooded with outlets and sources. So which are truthful?

no way to tell unless we have first hand knowledge... and thus we are doomed to follow the Pied Piper.

for he who controls the information controls the people.

showing a preference will only get you into trouble, 90% of everything is crap...

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10-10-2018 11:22 PM  5 days agoPost 5
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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RM3
this is an area that is very difficult to determine fact or fiction... we rely on others that claim to be stating the truth. If we look for more evidence, we then look online to other sources that we also trust to be truthful.

but today we are literally flooded with outlets and sources. So which are truthful?

no way to tell unless we have first hand knowledge... and thus we are doomed to follow the Pied Piper.

for he who controls the information controls the people.
Interesting. I have noticed that "news" in general have two major sequential components.
  • The first component is what I call "awareness of the event". This is the major topic of the news.
  • The second part is "causes/intent of the event", this is where news outlets try to inject their own opinion on the subject.
For the most part, I tend to trust major news outlets on reporting the first component i.e. there was a bombing, there was a shooting, there was a protest, there was violence in the protest, the market was high or low, somebody died, etc. With two or more data points in this category, it's reliable for all practical purposes.

The second part it's trickier because it is here where news outlets try to explain what caused such event or what was the intent for such event. I normally refrain from believing their reasons because that's the internalization that one (as a viewer or reader) must do. We don't need predigested topics. Unfortunately, that's what most people like to consume.

If you pay attention, just watch news clips on TV and see if you can identify the format. Example, there was a shooting somewhere in the US that killed x number of people (first component). And now to discuss this topic we have Mr. Such & Such ex-director of some agency that can explain why we are seeing such a rise in shootings and what we can do to prevent them (second component).

Unfortunately, some news outlets are even messing up with reporting the first component and deceiving their readers/viewers.
A pro-Trump rally could be reported as an Alt-Right rally.
An Anti-Police Brutality protest could be reported as Anti-Police.

Anyway, details matter.

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10-11-2018 10:38 AM  5 days agoPost 6
sjgusmc21

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San Antonio, Texas

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for he who controls the information controls the people.

Ever see the movie 'The Running Man'?

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10-11-2018 01:58 PM  5 days agoPost 7
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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for he who controls the information controls the people.

That statement is true IF information drives people 1 for 1.
This is why we need to become smarter on how to process such information.

Hence my original post. I'm interested in knowing how you guys approach and process such information.

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10-11-2018 03:01 PM  5 days agoPost 8
RM3

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Killeen, Texas - USA

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tekparasite
I'm interested in knowing how you guys approach and process such information.
thats like asking what our favorite food is... everyone is different, even then there are significant outliers in those groups, a Hispanic guy may love German food... but next week go all Hawaiian. Maybe a better question is to ask how people of certain political influence process information and what their sources generally are. It seems thats really what leads to such polarization and overall manipulation.

may want to ask whats in their water too...
tekparasite
That statement is true IF information drives people 1 for 1.
actually everything we do is driven by information we are exposed to, first hand or otherwise....

remember the Heavens Gate group... 39 people manipulated solely by information they deemed to be truthful and from a reliable source.

Information controls everything we do...

showing a preference will only get you into trouble, 90% of everything is crap...

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10-11-2018 05:17 PM  5 days agoPost 9
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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RM3
tekparasite
I'm interested in knowing how you guys approach and process such information.
thats like asking what our favorite food is...
I don't think that's the right analogy. Notice I didn't ask, what news outlet do you watch and trust. If that was the question, then your analogy would be more in line. Keeping with your example, my question is more like; how do you tell if the food is bad without actually eating it. Do you smell it? Do you poke it? Do you care if the place is dirty? That would more of an approach rather than saying... I like this food = I like to watch CNN.
RM3
Maybe a better question is to ask how people of certain political influence process information and what their sources generally are. It seems thats really what leads to such polarization and overall manipulation.
Well, that should be rather simple to point out. Once people latch on to a political ideology, the way they process information is simply through that filter of politics. Anything that agrees with that agenda is true, and everything that opposes it is bad. They use tools such as confirmation bias, cognitive dissonance, selective rationalization, etc. to always land on the winning side as they see it.
RM3
tekparasite
That statement is true IF information drives people 1 for 1.
actually everything we do is driven by information we are exposed to, first hand or otherwise....

.... Information controls everything.
To some degree 'Yes'. Which is why I made the point that if it's a 1 to 1 relationship, that's bad as not all information is true. So, we need to be driven by good information rather than false information.

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10-11-2018 06:17 PM  4 days agoPost 10
RM3

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Killeen, Texas - USA

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tekparasite
So, we need to be driven by good information rather than false information.
and what defines good information vs false when those doing the pushing maintain that they are the truth givers? most will adhere to sources for information that supports their views and ignore sources that dont. (aka Confirmation bias )....

Fox news = Republican/Conservative... CNN = Democrat/Left wing....

the best way to hide the truth and good information is to create more noise to filter through to get to it or distract with more enticing stories.

We can go back and forth with all this self righteous, patronizing pompous BS rhetorical question crap forever...

you know the answer to the questions your asking... one need to go no further than visit ones Face Book / Instagram page to get a clear answer.

showing a preference will only get you into trouble, 90% of everything is crap...

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10-12-2018 02:14 PM  4 days agoPost 11
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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I just want to be clear that when I use the term "good information", i'm referring to information that is true and not necessarily that is good news or something you happen to agree with.
RM3
tekparasite
So, we need to be driven by good information rather than false information.
and what defines good information vs false when those doing the pushing maintain that they are the truth givers?

most will adhere to sources for information that supports their views and ignore sources that dont. (aka Confirmation bias )....

Fox news = Republican/Conservative... CNN = Democrat/Left wing....
Very true. So, if you compare the coverage of the two (CNN vs. FoxNews) on a particular subject, you can see where they both agree on some basic facts. That's to the extend that I'm willing to consider something to be true.
It is the next level of details that I become very suspicions of believing. Example: There was a hurricane that had a lot of devastation. (All news outlets are covering such hurricane and its devastation). I take that to be correct. But within the same reporting segment, CNN will say that its cause was due to climate change, FoxNews will say that there is no cause, and a religious channel will say that its cause is due to gay marriage being allowed in the USA.

The problem is that news are given to us in a packaged form. I don't think we need to toss everything out, but learn how to identify the parts that are more likely to be true.
Unfortunately, for this to work, the reader/viewer must start with a conscious effort to be as objective as possible. Otherwise, news outlets will take you in a roller coaster ride of emotions.

Also, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. And the entity making the claim has the burden of proof.

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10-12-2018 04:53 PM  4 days agoPost 12
RM3

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tekparasite
CNN will say that its cause was due to climate change,
last time I checked.. they blame hurricanes on Trump. cause his policies over the last year and a half(in an environmental time scale seconds) have somehow managed to affect the climate which in turn has lead to more severe weather.

https://www.louderwithcrowder.com/cnn-trump-florence/

... if that be true.... Trump is the modern day Moses... able to lift his arms and within minutes bring in a change in the weather that directly affects water displacement, high winds and the eventual death of those left behind.

showing a preference will only get you into trouble, 90% of everything is crap...

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10-12-2018 06:23 PM  3 days agoPost 13
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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RM3
tekparasite
CNN will say that its cause was due to climate change,
last time I checked.. they blame hurricanes on Trump. cause his policies over the last year and a half(in an environmental time scale seconds) have somehow managed to affect the climate which in turn has lead to more severe weather.

https://www.louderwithcrowder.com/cnn-trump-florence/

... if that be true.... Trump is the modern day Moses... able to lift his arms and within minutes bring in a change in the weather that directly affects water displacement, high winds and the eventual death of those left
Which shows exactly my point. I bet Hurricane Florance did happen similar to Michael. We can also be confident that those hurricanes hit the areas they reported on and how strong they were.
Now, for the causes of hurricanes and their frequency, etc., I wouldn't look at CNN or FoxNews to give me that sort of information because that's scientific topic not political. I wouldn't look at Bill Gore, Leonardo DiCaprio, Rush Limbaugh, or Crowder.

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10-13-2018 02:22 PM  3 days agoPost 14
wjvail

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Meridian, Mississippi

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To your question... I have a multi-pronged approach.

I begin with, "Believe none of what you hear and 1/2 of what you see". I learned this 30+ years ago in SERE school and it applies today more than ever. In short, I begin with the assumption everything I hear is at best "spin" and at worst, simply wrong. From the position of "everything is incorrect", I begin to look at adding bits of information that might make a factoid or news story more believable.

Second, my dad worked for IBM for 30+ years. IBM's motto was and is, "THINK". Growing up, THINK was on every notepad and pencil in the house. It was on refrigerator magnets and playing cards. Nothing more or less than THINK. It didn't say what to think. It didn't say how to think or what to think about. I had the benefit of being told to THINK from a very early age and it still serves me well. If you read something, THINK. Process what you've been told.

Third, when reading a news story today I ALWAYS consider the source and what might be their motivation. If Stormy Daniels says she slept with The Donald, I have to ask "Is she simply informing me of fact?" or "Is their some other unspoken motivation?". Along these lines, always "follow the money". If something is reported as "news", ask "whose agenda is advanced by this "news"?". In the case of Stormy (ironic name), she's a porn star, out with a new book and pedaling salacious information that is 10 years old. Strikes one, two and three. There is positively no reason to listen to any "news" she might have.

4th... Get your "news" from many sources. My phone has apps for CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, BBC News, Russia Today (RT), Al Jazeera, USA Today and a few others. It only takes a moment to drift through each. Sometimes the most valuable thing to come from this is seeing the spin each "news" source puts on the same story. One "news" source may report that the POTUS was booed mightily while giving a speech and another might cover the same story but say paid protesters were escorted out by police while the POTUS gave a speech. Both stories might be correct and it's valuable to read each. Sometimes it's just as valuable to learn what is not reported by a news source. For instance, it might be proven that Christine Blasey Ford was paid by the DNC for her "work" (I made this up so PLEASE don't repeat it as fact) but, because it doesn't advance one news outlet's agenda, they might not report it at all. If you only get your information from a single source you're wasting your time. Remember, "If you don't read the paper, you're uninformed. If you do read the paper you're misinformed".

"Well, Nothing bad can happen now."

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10-13-2018 03:00 PM  3 days agoPost 15
tekparasite

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Houston, Texas

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wjvail
To your question... I have a multi-pronged approach.

I begin with, "Believe none of what you hear and 1/2 of what you see". I learned this 30+ years ago in SERE school and it applies today more than ever. .....

Second, my dad worked for IBM for 30+ years. IBM's motto was and is, "THINK". .....

Third, when reading a news story today I ALWAYS consider the source and what might be their motivation. ......

4th... Get your "news" from many sources. .....
Awesome!! As I was reading your post, I noticed that I use the same components you described when approaching news. However, you explained it much better than I did. I'll definitely keep those 4 points handy:
  • Skepticism by default
  • Don't let others do the thinking for you
  • Consider the source and possible agenda
  • Get multiple points of reference
Given that we are more connected than ever, I think people need to be taught how to apply this in the same way people are taught how to read, how to write, etc. This is important as RM3 stated " Information controls everything we do..."

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10-13-2018 04:38 PM  3 days agoPost 16
wjvail

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Meridian, Mississippi

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Given that we are more connected than ever, I think people need to be taught how to apply this in the same way people are taught how to read, how to write, etc.
I had not considered the idea of formally teaching people how to get their news - but it seems obvious now. I don't know who I would trust to teach the concept but it seems like something that has to be done.

Maybe critical thinking was something my parents taught me. I know it's something I tried to teach my kids. With so much information available and zero barriers to producing "news", it is almost certainly time to teach people how to listen.

"Well, Nothing bad can happen now."

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10-13-2018 07:57 PM  2 days agoPost 17
tekparasite

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wjvail
Given that we are more connected than ever, I think people need to be taught how to apply this in the same way people are taught how to read, how to write, etc.
I had not considered the idea of formally teaching people how to get their news - but it seems obvious now. I don't know who I would trust to teach the concept but it seems like something that has to be done.

Maybe critical thinking was something my parents taught me. I know it's something I tried to teach my kids. With so much information available and zero barriers to producing "news", it is almost certainly time to teach people how to listen.
Yep.. I agree. I do the same with my kids. They are at an age that a MEME or a short youtube video can be powerful enough to shape their minds about a given subject. That generation has a shorter retention span, so news and messages are packaged that way.

Without any guidance or tools to defend themselves against credulity, it is scary to imagine where we'll end up as a society if no action is taken.

But even older generations aren't free from being gullible, even with all that experience we claim to have.

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10-14-2018 02:03 AM  2 days agoPost 18
wjvail

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Well... My hope is that I've asked my kid enough questions over the years that they will ask question after I'm gone.

And maybe they are better prepared for a modern world than I am.

I'm 57. When I was young we got 3 TV channels. 2, 4 and 6 - easy. News came on on all three channels at dinner and bed time. ABC, NBC and CBS didn't necessary want to show the news. They had to. There was a tradition of trying really hard to report the news "as it happened". Reporters strove to be trusted. They lived or died on being "believable".

That is how I grew up.

CNN was the beginning of the change. The 24 hour Cable News Network established "news" as entertainment. There was now serious money in "news". The truth was less important than viewership. People watching sells advertisement and adds mean money. More viewers also means more exposure and potentially more influence. There is now power and money in news. "Just the facts" no longer pays the bills.

My kids have grown up in a new world. My formative years were in a time when the nightly "news" was gospel. I carry that baggage forward. My kids don't. My now 28 year old daughter has been on Facebook and MySpace since she was 12. My 31 year old son doesn't know a time before thousands of "news" outlets. Even though they are a generation younger than me, they often seem more acclimatized to filtering BS.

"Well, Nothing bad can happen now."

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