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In summer 2017, Pew Research Center and Elon University’s Imagining the Internet Center conducted a large canvassing of technologists, scholars, practitioners, strategic thinkers and others, asking them to react to this framing of the issue:
The rise of “fake news” and the proliferation of doctored narratives that are spread by humans and bots online are challenging publishers and platforms. Those trying to stop the spread of false information are working to design technical and human systems that can weed it out and minimize the ways in which bots and other schemes spread lies and misinformation.
The question: In the next 10 years, will trusted methods emerge to block false narratives and allow the most accurate information to prevail in the overall information ecosystem? Or will the quality and veracity of information online deteriorate due to the spread of unreliable, sometimes even dangerous, socially destabilizing ideas?
They released the report later that year. It's worth your time to read.
Theme 5 highlights what I found most interesting from respondents:
Tech can’t win the battle (against online misinformation). The public must fund and support the production of objective, accurate information. It must also elevate information literacy to be a primary goal of education
A large share of respondents said that technology alone can’t work to improve the information environment. Among these respondents, most pointed out two areas of concern: 1) The need for better funding of and support for journalism that serves the common good. The attention economy of the digital age does not support journalism of the general quality of the news media of the late 20th century, which was fairly well-respected for serving the public good with information that helped create an informed citizenry capable of informed decisions; 2) The need for massive efforts to imbue the public with much better information literacy skills; this requires an education effort that reaches out to those of all ages, everywhere.
-=-=-=-=-=- Jayne Cravens Author, The LAST Virtual Volunteering Guidebook
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