Post-Truth: The New War on Truth and How to Fight Back
Aug. 15 2017
Welcome to the Post Truth era - a time in which the art of the lie is shaking the very foundations of democracy and the world as we know it. The Brexit vote; Donald Trump's victory; the rejection of climate change science; the vilification of immigrants; all have been based on the power to evoke feelings and not facts. So what does it all mean and how can we champion truth in in a time of lies and "alternative facts?" In this eye-opening and timely book, Post Truth is distinguished from a long tradition of political lies, exaggeration and spin. What is new is not the mendacity of politicians but the public's response to it and the ability of new technologies and social media to manipulate, polarise and entrench opinion. Where trust has evaporated, conspiracy theories thrive, the authority of the media wilt and emotions matter more than facts . Now, one of the UK's most respected political journalists, Matthew d'Ancona investigates how we got here, why quiet resignation is not an option and how we can and must fight back
Post-Truth: The New War on Truth and How to Fight Back by Matthew D’Ancona is a delightful and timely book for anyone who needs a primer on the complicated information environment in which we now find ourselves. I happened to come across it quite by accident at Blackwell’s when giving talks at Oxford on, of all things, participatory propaganda and fake news. This short book was not a disappointment.
At fewer than 200 pages, this book is a quick and easy read. As a journalist, d’Ancona writes simply and clearly, making this a great introduction on the topic. As a researcher covering related topics, I found myself nodding along in agreement. This book is particularly great if you are just an average person looking to get a handle on the information world around you.
Among the many points d’Ancona makes include the necessity of trust in our society – as well as how fake and misleading information erodes this today – and the fact that profit, in terms of gaining clicks and views, is a major driver behind the spread of misinformation.
Post-Truth: The New War on Truth and How to Fight Back is available at Amazon.
La Generalista is the online identity of Alicia Wanless – a researcher and practitioner of strategic communications for social change in a Digital Age.
Alicia researches how we shape — and are shaped — by a changing information space. As the Director of Strategic Communications at The SecDev Foundation, Alicia develops campaigns and strategies for engaging beneficiaries in outreach and behavioural change. Her work includes developing a training program that deals with verifying information and the spread of content online, and has supported projects in the Middle East, Vietnam and the post-Soviet space.