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tv   Media and Fake News  CSPAN  June 6, 2017 3:51am-4:55am EDT

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the ethics center hosted this event at the new york city public library.
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good evening, everybody. i am the executive director of the ethics center and in partnership with the carnegie council for the ethics and international relations in the globalization of international affairs program and advanced searches the network australian circuit around the world i would like to welcome you here this evening for what is a very hot topic i think it isn't just the speakers it must be almost 24 hours since i've arrived and see how big an issue but as i mentioned is a vicious thing we
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are having the conversation on the first of april because of course it is april fools day and the significance of that for me whether it is literature at the job othe jobof the fools alwaysk truth to power. it's to speak truth to power that can reside in the ideas and assumptions and things that can hold us in its way so w place we going to talk about that. we have the longish hash tag, shades of red and blue. there will be books on sale on a
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corner. there's two empty chairs and they will eventually be opened up to you as members of the audience who might like to take a seat at the table. the chair will announce and have
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a visit and ask a question and make a comment and give way to somebody else. people will do the heavy lifting so i mentioned this. [applause] earlier this morning the world opened up to the following. quote, when well we start talking about the obama surveillance scandal and stop with the fake story of
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what is thtoldby the same news d there is no past victory but is now pushing the phony brushoff story. a total scam. what this is a fiel says as we e discussion is what does it mean when we say it is fake news. president trump has one idea and many others have a different idea. the research center reported 62% of u.s. adults get the news in social media and top resources include facebook, twitter. the senate intelligence committee held a hearing at which the wall center george washington university law center
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said washington paid more than 1,000 people to spread anti-clinton stories online, many of them were fraud. stories like hillary has parkinson's. fake news consumers on the left in particular were more likely to be affluent and college-educated than those on the right. this is happening when the media has fallen to historical lows. where do we draw the line with its opinion in fact that's what
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we will discuss for the next hour. pope francis endorses donald trump. this one i had to look up to make sure it wasn't true accepting refugees from trump america. then an interesting one, trump sends plane to transport 200 marines and this one was popularized by sean hannity so we have a panel here and i want to get to them before we start turning it over to you in the audience and i thought i would ask as a writer of nonfiction and fiction where do you draw the line?
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>> i think there is such a thing as the truth. if you believe the world is flat the world does not need you to believe that it's round so that is where i started and it is a belief that is enormously eroded in recent times and very strangely they've done a flip and it's crazy stuff from the internet and maybe malicious and put there by russians
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specifically targeting bernie sanders. now in the post election, the white house from which all flows it is now in the mainstream media. that is a very unstable society.
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how would you assess the health of the so called main stream media. i believe nothing is true and everything is possible and it is an account of post-soviet russ russia.
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his account of how the russian government uses information as a political tool and it's not a 20th century soviet union model of pressing particular views on policy questions or cultural issues. it's much more free-flowing and much more difficult to nail down and you see it is at work at a place like russia that is the state affiliate of the broadcaster and it manifests itself in extensive coverage of the series and highly entertaining but it is under the guise of news and was a loyal viewer today comes away with not really knowing what to believe and i think that is the danger
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that is easier to manipulate and in that sense the propaganda where you're not telling people what to think tha but for them o know is the danger and you mentioned statistics another institution does the news media with people not really knowing what they know and thinking that their opinion is valid and important. i live in washington, d.c. where everyone has an opinion and can write and that doesn't make you special and no one cares what your opinion is and unless you
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are a renowned commentator you should be measured according to the facts you bring to the table and it is a rare trait among reporters as he more value than putting the information out there. >> it is a problem right now although i liked it more when it was in the national enquirer sort of a delightful fake news
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but now it is a real thing and research has been going on for some time however what should have happened is a self reflection about very poor job we have an understanding of the populace and people have chosen to latch onto this fake news and it's already been mentioned but it is at historical lows. 32% thought they did a good job conveying the news accurately
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and honestly end of the number plummets to 14% then there is almost no trust and that happened over a long period of time in recent years they talk about the culture on campus and it was a shared interest the rolling stone put out a story about this horrible gang rape and it turned out that it was based on something no cover story should have been based on it it was only the most recent example completely getting
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something wrong on a very important topic. you do that for enough times you lose the trust of the people and it is difficult to push back. >> i was at an event with the heavy hitters and not one of them had any sense of what was about to happen. "the new york times" was talking about with the headline should be the next day and the way they were discussing it was a foregone conclusion at the time
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when the polls were actually closing between the reporters that stayed in washington and new york are the editors are based in the major cities and kind of susceptible to the thinking. they said you know i think you can still do it. it was these industrial areas and she said i was consistently
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surprised by the people that approached me and they said i'm still going to vote for him. >> it was completely underestimated. we've looked through a generation where the idea of truth has been disputed in the literary theories from the academy what is your perspective on that?
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.. >> >> it is about to rules of evidence and verify ability and the quality of the rational argument actually they did not verify the claims so the idea of the truth that there is a chance
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you could disapprove it with the evidence it is a fancy way to save lives and there is a political benefit to say that the with fake news it is intended to confuse. and therefore were conspiracy theories are corrosive and that lies are dressed up as truth and dressed up as a footnote that looks scholarly and scientific even if it may not be most of the people.
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>> i have a higher opinion of this audience. >> i don't get to say that during this round requires a fair amount of physics with the assumption and relive that it is flat. from the perception pointedly that is irrelevant because of the scale relationship is not relevant to us. i don't worry about slipping off the curvature of the europe. -- of the earth. now we have a conspiracy theory.
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now one very important thing to separate people from one another and to create the vacuum of a authoritarianism so when it comes from the white house is not the source but coming from the most powerful place that this mistrust of news the of that predilection to go -- to leave the things the way they are even if it turns out to me you have verifiable evidence with a hard truth there is a the percentage of the population that would not believe it by
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those rules of you can determine if it is true or not there are many things that i believe in now to say was wrong in the vacuum with the undermining of a democracy and that is my view the intention of by the president of the united states himself with mistrusting conspiracy theories people will want to believe them. >> i was thinking about this with those headlines of hillary clinton without any
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evidence of any kind. >> doctor who would never examined her. >> but yes. matter hall of august of last year the immediate response was nothing more than the conspiracy theory. there was a major cable tv network that said she is fine but what about donald trump? "the washington post" talk about hillary clinton's health. so if you want to have credibility it treats the question more openly and honestly and then you can trust the media.
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was it just four years ago with mitt romney? he runs for office from the current republican standards. and because of how liberal he was by running for office he was a mormon and a choir boy a and after a year of campaign coverage that includes reporters chasing after him in europe what about your dad and this binder of women and make him into a caricature it makes voters think there is nothing we can do to keep the me that - - media from high style -- cost dial.
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>> we as a public responsible to have an overheated interests in the private lives of candidates. i want to know what they want to do with the country but we like to read about them so it is a commercial operation. second, both candidates were responsible about giving true reliable information so at the age of 70 they are not fundamentally healthy because of their connection to mortality is a lot closer. so i don't expect either of them. and then with a crackpot dr. dr. give him a hit a drug for haired growth does not work.
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so my point is that whether he is a liberal republican maybe he is. you no more than i, but i never thought his candidacy was harmed by this uniform and we need to stop reading it. so on the health front neither candidate distinguishes himself or herself. >> but to your point dealing with political information with the day-to-day political system it is not the perfect academic testing environment in that way but instead you get information that our fallible they get things wrong or say things
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they shouldn't or inject their own bias so the challenge to the press is to minimize the degree of which that is transmitted. that we would regard the normal process of discovery. >> roosevelt for example. >> getting zero rounds that health aspect in that election i'd think the fact that a journalist by and large i was raised in new york and live in washington and i tried to recognize that on the day to day basis -- basis and not to be informed of a cultural bias that would be interesting if i put in an opinion out there and it is wrong to
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disregard a very large segment of the populace that i so further distressed so i think there is a human element that makes it much more difficult to conduct that dispassionate arguments >> that is a great title. [laughter] it seems that we cannot come up with the occasions when the press was horribly wrong and equally with the opposite when they did a service to get things right when people try to conceal. but i think part of the reason mainstream media has
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fewer working journalists and larger and larger numbers of opinions of people filling up of spaces so there is more opinion and that is a problem that we live in the changed situation where on his first day in office, the president of the united states declared war on the news media. and declared them to be an enemy and expanded that to be an enemy of the people. i am sure mr. trump is not familiar but he may have heard of it if he has not steve van hands so if he were ana situation where the most powerful authority in
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the land declares the news media to be his personal adversary that is a changed situation in which that is no longer the game. >> this undermines also with the internet we have the ability to confirm our beliefs that we don't share a common source any more. >> it must be noted throughout the campaign on the front page of "the new york times" the middle of august the reporter would say what do you do when you think donald trump is a threat to their republic? in that they need to be paid or they would be accused of
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not upholding journalistic standards to think you have to be this way that israel to sided war you save the presidency is powerful so was the media and has a very narrow set of cultural ideas if you don't share those ideas it does feel you are under threat and under assault for those heretics' that don't share the same views to highlight them that does field threatening to not be surprised if that feels like a pratt. >> the media ended an enormous job to make that trump candidacy possible. >> they love to have him on
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so in fact, i think they did a great job to enable him in the first place during the course of the campaign they had far more protest from hillary van trump they thought themselves were badly treated even more than the trump campaign. >> in their defense did a pretty good job. >> but that was one-sided and as a practitioner we heard about standard practices howdy use snuff out the truth what should reporters be doing?.
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>> trying to find some information and confirming that it doesn't have to be the papers but my background is in document digging and muckraking and investigative reporting and i find that i am on firmer ground dealing with public record where i am not relying on the unnamed sources with powless drama in the white house. i find comfort in the factual basis with access journalism there is a proud tradition of that and would word bernstein had their anonymous sources but grounding would of your
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writing in fact, some of the obvious but rather than speculation by a political staffer with an ax to grind i search for something concrete i can use as the anchor. >> there was a shift when the media went from telling us what happened to telling us what to think. >> there is a fetish of the data are journalism for everybody who wants to be next with a rush to project the outcome of the political contest is a bad trend that leads people to shoot jump to conclusions and unsupported by the evidence purporting to there is less focus on the outcome.
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>> so in the american context so when the prime minister says something that is not true it is a consequence far more reaching than any media or my personal life. the prime minister of hungary went on television to say the central european university was a violation of a hungarian law but there was no such lot. he said it over national television even the government newspaper said there is none at all. so the retraction as this bounce but the un truce has this bounce because who is the voice? the cry me this -- minister and leader of my country and to now to lie in sedgy boldfaced manner.
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>> but to say he's has not been singularly unsuccessful >> that is why the approval rating is upside down. >> think about eight famous statement you can keep your doctor or your health care plan the media was not skeptical for the entirety of the eight years now the once you do do journalism now six times after he won reelection after obamacare was passed this is the media question right now the way you build credibility is to hold all people accountable if you adore and love such as president obama or any emotional dislike. [applause] >> this is not fair. of speech that president obama engaged was ahead c
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would have to determine that he lied or made a mistake. >> because there was analysis going into that. >> i am not defending president obama of but that does not make our right. >> people love to have the media lecter about but they lost their voice. >> at all believe the media was that deeply in love with president obama i'd think it is retrospective thinking but a change situation the president declared the media to be the enemy that is the situation. period.
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sova moments in american history are not comparable. so to have the entire force of the state which we know is an extremely important part of democracy. [applause] >> during the obama presidency he did have people who had charges against them and actually had actions taken against reporters. just last week in california action taken against reporters for how they did their journalism that people are not upset because it was a conservative journalist this is what they should be concerned about no matter. >> why is the french flag on
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the table? [laughter] >> i actually m share of the advisor leeboard that was just established called shadowing trump. i urge you to follow it i have a comment 17 different cabinet secretaries including bob rice from the clinton administration or the obama administration speaking truth to power truth trump's lies. fax do not cease to exist because they are ignored but to salmon rushdie i do think we're living in a truly unprecedented time i see a
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dialogue with there is content for science or dissent or the judiciary that can lead to a authoritarianism / welcome comments. >> i've been there is a problem with respect for science and evidence then there is a link that is all so it is true that they do not want to believe and that can do great damage but some things we don't know exactly what it is and that should be clear as well but i think this is unprecedented and you see it also in the proposal of the budget to diminish the american investment in basic science enterprise.
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but it is slightly hypocritical women walk into a hospital there want the best benefits of science so science doesn't matter but it does with my blood pressure. [applause] >> i have a question on the different models of media you spoken about some of those new models those that get the news from snap chat or other social media or crowds worst news and i think there is a new model like in the netherlands which is devolving again so some of these issues that we faced so what about the evolution of news media? or
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what that would mean for the consumption going forward?. >> i get my a news daily from twitter for the most part but i have found as somebody mentioned that is the self reenforcing tendency of partisan news or social media is very easy to be silo in the environment like that in each site has its own character with the type of content that you see more widely circulated. and since the election or the campaign with twitter to be less and less useful as it is louder and found myself migrating back to mainstream media.
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i think delivery is less important than content so now i find myself going back to see who does content well so this is just my personal habit but their effort needs to be made to seek out that content whatever mechanism they use but that expose issued to new information. >> one of the problems with the new media is basically day are gathering stories it is not really a journalist that is out to get the news they just go to read the news then extract those stories for a particular
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audience. i think the internet world can find that economic model that allows journalism to take place then is a much lesser form and what has been damaged by it. >> do think it is a great trend in journalism their new hobbies will be newspapers if they want to put up the money to support quality journalism that is great. >> but he hired 60 new journalist?. >> if so my application is in the mail. [laughter] >> i have a few?
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points. i am troubled by the attempt to evaluate trump's push back against the media on a rational basis because it also seems to me it is based on the motion he petulancy tweets and does that have to do with any rational analysis or a man who cannot control his emotions?. >> i remember that moment right after he won the presidency he said he would not tweet as president and the next morning you did feel he is going to keep going but then also the response of the media tweeter it -- twitter is amazing as they constantly
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signal how they feel so the journalists all how that save starkey reaction and i thought i dunno which is most discouraging that he is tweeting were there reaction of animals feel that they are in a code dependent dysfunctional relationship. [laughter] >> i agree with that. >> but my fear it is not spontaneous or irrational but very calculated. different were just a crazy guy who could not contain his immediate responses and just happened to be president and then say he just woke up this morning forget about it.
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but i think it is immensely calculated and very effective for his base. >> i don't know if it is calculated but he is a creature of the media where he was brought up and he will go back and watch his own appearances on television but with the sound off and looked at his physical presence i believe there is social science that suggest your physical presence determines your reaction much more than what you say. . .
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another being the discourse and the elite should be distrusted and i think it's interesting to see that coming from people who are doing the thinking and that contributes to this trust and how should we address that? >> i happen to know something
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like facebook real and fake is having difficulty with to start fact checking they have to massage this algorithm but then at the end of the day they are looking to make a buck so it is a countervailing pressure as well. they are guilty from this elite discussion. i expect a person that operates on the late but i didn't choose and there are some things that
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where there is a legitimate expertise so there was a massive reaction and mistrust because the elite was unbelievably arrogant and forgot how to talk to ordinary people. they've been agnostic or have no respect and have made a big mistake. they need to talk with people who think differently so we are prisoners of our own mistakes. in the minds of many people it isn't a reaction against leeds that they have been truly wrong you wouldn't go to your doctor if they were killing every third patient or whatnot. you would understand about what affecthat thatwould affect whatg
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so people do believe that there is media or politics they haven't done a good job but it based on something more. >> it seemed to apply to the government of the legionnaires is the timing that controls almost all of the wealth in america. what we are talking about is the professional class. the idea that it is being transformed into an elite.
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my question is i think we are running ahead of all these things on a premise. for some reason it means liberal in some ways it is like the fake news but people say that it is big news. we need real news. it's taking shots at the media or that's big news but it's an obscure website and that is not a solution so whether it is real or fake it is a false dichotomy
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that i don't know where to go what they call it a. the news has to be so what is news these days. >> it has to go back. it's hard work to find something that's true because it is plausible but how do you know it is true. the theory of the press is that
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it was independent and have the standards. but delivering mechanisms do we consider the meaning of. i don't have an answer to that. i think anyone with a snapshot account does that make them the media so that is an issue of shorthanded terminology for different definitions and of different people.
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it's hard when you spend 22 years telling them there is no such thing and you have to look at everyone's different objective. >> i feel sorry for education if that is what they taught you. thank you for having me for the great discussion. it is funny but what strikes me we had a long conversation about affirmative action in schools and the benefit of different beliefs and the school system as
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i look at the news media it seems it is a group of liberal people reporting the news to basically everyone and there are certainly exceptions to this but is there any merit or consideration in the major media news outlets which is a different belief system given the news. there is very little papers say in other things like religious issues and there is a general group that has the same socioeconomic status and it can create a lack of understanding in the world but it hasn't
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worked very well. i thought about other things like maybe you could have one person that serves as a devil's advocate that will help you see what you got wrong in your stories. it's not just reporters, as editors. it is deeply disconcerting for the project of having credibility. >> i turned on the tv and said i was just flipping through the channels available on my tv set
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and i don't know what it was but over the main moments since i woke up when it happened to when i went to bed that night, not one word until the end of the day about what happened and at what point were they responsible for putting him in office and i suppose if you are listenin wero that all day long that it's all you heard a. >> it is an old problem not just in the media. most want to hear the news about americans but the lack of
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coverage in the news media is genuine and i think if you come from the news media it is clear how different that is a. it comes from around the world and it is what we do and who we are.
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[applause] we will be moving from this format to something different. the panel of the young leaders of the future that are going to be working for a fictional set of issues so it is a different format. the authors will be available.
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