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Reflection & Synthesis on Truthiness

I’d like to clus­ter my thoughts and struc­ture them into four cat­e­gories. One is what I will call foun­da­tion­al issues. Second, a few words and obser­va­tions regard­ing meth­ods. Third, a few areas of appli­ca­tion that we touched upon this morn­ing, and maybe also high­light­ing one or two that we haven’t talked so much about but that I think are increas­ing­ly impor­tant. And then final­ly also as a segue to the fol­low­ing ses­sions, a few words about poten­tial points of inter­ven­tion.

Ethan Zuckerman on Truthiness

When you’re look­ing at some­thing as big as these ques­tions of ver­i­fi­a­bil­i­ty, truth, truthi­ness, dis­in­for­ma­tion, so on and so forth, I find myself now try­ing to pick apart the ques­tions we talked about this morn­ing from the per­spec­tive of tractabil­i­ty. So let me use that to sort of frame a cou­ple of the con­ver­sa­tions we’ve had and then a cou­ple of things that haven’t come up, and then see if I can sort of push us for­ward a lit­tle bit into where we go this after­noon.

Inflection Point on Truthiness

Well I believe there is a truth we share. I think it’s our sense of jus­tice. I think of the great Paul Newman depic­tion in The Verdict, his clos­ing argu­ment when he speaks to the jury and says, You are the law. I believe there is jus­tice in our hearts.” So the truth, the ver­dict. Vera dic­tos, speak the truth. That’s what juries are told to do.

Biases Abound

I’ve expe­ri­enced first hand the chal­lenges of try­ing to cor­rect mis­in­for­ma­tion, and in part my aca­d­e­m­ic research builds on that expe­ri­ence and tries under­stand why it was that so much of what we did at Spinsanity antag­o­nized even those peo­ple who were inter­est­ed enough to go to a fact-checking web site.

The Science of Why We Deny Science and Reality

What is it about our brains that makes facts so chal­leng­ing, so odd and threat­en­ing? Why do we some­times dou­ble down on false beliefs? And maybe why do some of us do it more than oth­ers?

Kai Wright on Elusive Objectivity

I actu­al­ly come at this with a set of ques­tions for folks here. Because before we get to the action ques­tion I have ques­tions about the broad­er prob­lem, right. So when we’re talk­ing about truth and truthi­ness and in media, I think we first have to ask whose truth mat­ters, and what are its bound­aries.

Emily Bell on Elusive Objectivity

This idea of con­trol is so baked into the jour­nal­is­tic psy­chol­o­gy that actu­al­ly this artic­u­la­tion, done in a highly-controlled envi­ron­ment with an adver­tis­ing agency, is one which even though it’s not new to the open Web is still very very very new to jour­nal­ism. And what we don’t have at the moment is any­thing like a bal­anc­ing invest­ment in the kinds of things which allow us to par­tic­i­pate in the crowd.

Kathleen Hall Jamieson on Elusive Objectivity

The dan­ger is that we are tak­ing the agen­da that is being set by those who are the polit­i­cal play­ers, and by check­ing with­in it ignor­ing the things that are con­se­quen­tial that we ought to be debat­ing, that to some extent exist in anoth­er world which is a world about what is desir­able and good, and what the trade-offs actu­al­ly are and how we should arbi­trate those track trade-offs.

Tim Hwang on New Media 360

We iden­ti­fied a group of users on Twitter and we said as a cod­ing chal­lenge, like social bat­tle­bots, write a bot that will embed itself in this net­work and we will score you based on how well these bots are able to achieve some kind of social change, either in the pat­tern of con­nec­tions between peo­ple or in the things that peo­ple talk about.

Filippo Menczer on Truthy Tweeting

I’m here to tell you lit­tle bit about a few exam­ples of truthy memes that we’ve uncov­ered with the sys­tem that we have online. It’s a web site where we track memes com­ing out of Twitter and we try to see if we could spot some sig­na­tures based on the net­works of who retweets what, basi­cal­ly, and who men­tions whom.

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