La Generalista is the online identity of Alicia Wanless – a researcher and practitioner of strategic communications for social change in a Digital Age. Alicia has spoken publicly on the Age of (Dis)information and Participatory Propaganda, and has participated in events at Wilton Park, the Hedayah Centre, Ryerson University, Whitehall, and the Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, among others. Below are a collection of some of her public talks:
Is Digital Propaganda Turning us into Propagandists?
Propaganda has traditionally followed a very top-down communication model. The propagandist issues persuasive messaging aimed at achieving a specific outcome among the target audience. As such, it’s been rather one way – like most mass media. With the internet and social media, however, the audience can in fact become coopted to propagate persuasive messaging too. This talk at Ryerson University's Social Media Lab explores how persuasive communications are changing online through the example of Donald Trump’s campaign during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, putting forward a model for participatory propaganda.
Talk Delivered 31 March 2017 in Toronto, Canada
Stop and Think – Before Falling Down the Digital Rabbit Hole
This TED Talk was presented at Whitehall in London. The event, Tedx Whitehall Women, was hosted by the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The theme of the overall TEDx event was “Time”. This talk posits that we should take the time to stop and think before falling down the digital rabbit hole, and covers issues such as online bullying, disinformation, complaining, and narcissism - but also suggests ways in which each of us can improve our information space for the better.
There is an elephant in the room – and it is persuasion. Until we come to grips with its role in Western society, we cannot tackle issues associated with the shaping of the information environment.
Russian propaganda efforts will seek to delegitimize the mission in the eyes of Canadians As Canadian troops begin their mission…