The 2020 Election Will Be a War of Disinformation - The Atlantic
www.theatlantic.com
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The president’s reelection campaign ... multimillion-dollar ad blitz ... shaping Americans’ understanding of ... impeachment ... micro-targeted ads ... portraying Trump as a heroic reformer ... while Democrats plotted a coup... An alternate information ecosystem was taking shape ... I wanted to see it from the inside...I was surprised by the effec…

Opinion | Trump Is Staking Out His Own Universe of ‘Alternative Facts’ - The New York Times
www.nytimes.com
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In less than a year... weekly church-attending white Protestants convinced that Donald Trump was anointed by God to be president grew from 29.6 percent to 49.5 percent... Capitalizing on that devotion is integral to Trump’s re-election ...all-enveloping digital campaign website... campaign app... a self-contained, self-reinforcing arena where Trum…

Inside Trump’s coronavirus meltdown | Financial Times
www.ft.com
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When the history is written of how America handled the global era’s first real pandemic ... Trump’s claim to global leadership leaps out. History will mark Covid-19 as the first time that ceased to be true. US airlifts have been missing in action. America cannot even supply itself...a president who ignored increasingly urgent intelligence warnings…

What lessons haven’t we learned since 2016? Lesson 1: RAGE - Stand Up Republic
standuprepublic.com
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The rage-engage cycle is a key part of how malign narratives gain traction on social media... into traditional media... disinformation content is designed to be polarizing... exploits the business models of social media... pointing out that something is false and dangerous ... giving more oxygen to the fire... [Trump] tests and revises purposefull…

How Will the Coronavirus End? - The Atlantic
www.theatlantic.com
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In 2018, I wrote ... that America was not ready for the pandemic that would eventually come... a new cohort who are born into a society profoundly altered by COVID-19... call them Generation C... shaped by the choices made in the coming weeks...More transmissible and fatal than seasonal influenza... stealthier... nations must ... identify infected…

‘I made Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare tool’: meet the data war whistleblower
www.theguardian.com
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Wylie ... the gay Canadian vegan who somehow ended up creating “Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare mindfuck tool”.... In 2014 Steve Bannon ... was Wylie’s boss. And Robert Mercer... Republican donor, was Cambridge Analytica’s investor... to bring big data and social media to an established military methodology – “information operations” – then t…

Trump’s ‘Dangerous Disability’? It’s the Dunning-Kruger Effect - Bloomberg
www.bloomberg.com

the knowledge illusion is a common form of human fallibility, but Trump takes it to an exceptional degree... When asked to explain something, he changes the subject, his confidence in his knowledge unwavering... reflectivity... whether people are likely to be highly deluded about their own knowledge... Low scores on the reflectivity test correlat…

There Really Was A Liberal Media Bubble
fivethirtyeight.com
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Groupthink produced a failure of the “wisdom of crowds” and an underestimate of Trump’s chances... political experts aren’t a very diverse group and tend to place a lot of faith in the opinions of other experts and other members of the political establishment. Once a consensus view is established, it tends to reinforce itself ... Social media, esp…

Psychology: One topic, three angles (Top3ics, Feb 2)
mathewlowry.myhub.ai
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Yet another variation on the Top3ics format: exploring three facets of one topic, highlighting one outstanding resource (plus a few extra links) for each.  Today’s theme... psychology

Why each side of the partisan divide thinks the other is living in an alternate reality
theconversation.com
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To some liberals, Donald Trump’s inauguration portends doom... to many conservatives, it’s a crowning moment ... as if each side is living in ... a different reality.... information avoidance... all of us ... ward off any new information that makes us feel bad, obligates us to do something we don’t want to do or challenges our worldview... we’re …

Fake News: Be Careful What You Wish For – Whither news? – Medium
medium.com
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Do we really want to set up Facebook or Google as censors ... to decide what is real and fake, true and false?

Trolling for Trump: How Russia Is Trying to Destroy Our Democracy
warontherocks.com
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these efforts seek to produce a divided electorate and a president with no clear mandate to govern. The ultimate objective is to diminish and tarnish American democracy... We’ve monitored more than 7,000 social media accounts over the last 30 months and at times engaged directly with them. Trump isn’t the end of Russia’s social media and hacking …

Donald Trump, Gustave Le Bon, and the Myth of Mobocracy
www.theatlantic.com
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the “crowd”—the concept, more so than the reality—was born in fin-de-siècle Paris... the fascination and fear of crowds obscures their reality and reach... But here’s the rub: “le crowd” is, in part, a mythical creature... less a feature of the modern political landscape than a creature of Le Bon’s private nightscape the “mob” that took the Bast…

10/11/2016
How Half Of America Lost Its F**king Mind
www.cracked.com
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There's this universal shorthand that epic adventure movies use to tell the good guys from the bad. The good guys are simple folk from the countryside ... while the bad guys are decadent assholes who live in the city and wear stupid clothes... We country folk are programmed to hate the prissy elites. That brings us to Trump.

10/11/2016
Phantasmagoria – Medium
medium.com
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the reality-based community... people who “believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality... That’s not the way the world really works anymore... We’re an empire... we create our own reality. ... Trump is building on the foundation laid by Karl Rove and other great American fabulists, but he’s doing something funda…

All hail the Trump-o-Meter
medium.com
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All hail the Trump-o-Meter, a short post on Medium

Storytelling and Branded Reality in the Internet of Experiences (and Trump’s Republican Party)
medium.com
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A couple of months ago I included augmented and virtual reality in Top3ics, my occasional newsletter, adding “Consider these as first notes towards a future post.” I then forgot about it. Thanks, Newt Gingrich!

The Eurosceptics’ rise: my personal timeline
medium.com
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In 2007 I tangled with the UK’s Eurosceptic movement when it was nothing more than a lunatic fringe. Post-Brexit, Welcome to the New Normal.

Facebook, Mobocracy & Augmented Reality - (Top3ics, 23 May)
mathewlowry.myhub.ai

This isn’t the first time I’ve covered the impact of social media on news; technologies like augmented reality; and the impact of both on society. It is the first time these Top3ics have meshed so perfectly in one month.

Trumpmenbashi
thediplomat.com
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Trump staged a rally in which three girls–called “The Freedom Kids”–lip-synched a pop song praising the brutality of their incumbent leader. “... Deal from strength or get crushed every time!” they sang... Many Americans found it baffling. For those familiar with the decadent patriotism of Central Asian national performances... it was disconcertin…

12/05/2016
Prepping for the AfterTrump
medium.com
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"So you think “President Trump” is the worst case scenario?" - Some thoughts, originally on my oldblog and then updated on Medium:

The rise of American authoritarianism - Vox
www.vox.com
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The American media, over the past year, has been trying to work out something of a mystery: Why is the Republican electorate supporting a far-right, orange-toned populist with no real political experience, who espouses extreme and often bizarre views? ... his support seems to cross demographic lines ... does surprisingly well from the Gulf Coast o…

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