Fix Fox & Fake News To Preserve The Future Of Democracy

By Jayasri Priyalal

Jayasri Priyalal

A defamation case filed by Dominion Voting system against Fox News settled with an agreement to pay US$ 787.5 million without going to a trial was headline news a few weeks back. Getting into similar controversies by news agencies proves a point, how election campaigning becomes a money-making venture for media companies. This episode further proves that election campaigns in many Western democracies are not for debates and discussion on issues to strengthen effective policy formulation but instead a tremendous effort towards fundraising on a large scale.

Fake news in the current era of the Internet of Things (IoT) has played a role in shaping the emotions of voters when they form opinions based on relative truth instead of absolute truth. The concept of truth is being relativized and individualized, losing its universal character, writes Henry Kissinger in his book World Order. He argues information is presented as being free; the recipient pays for it by supplying data to be exploited by persons unknown to the supplying source. Thus, communication technology threatens to diminish the individual’s capacity for an inward quest by increasing individuals’ reliance on technology-electronic & social media as a facilitator and mediator of thought. Television, computers, and smartphones compose a trifecta offering nearly constant interaction with a screen throughout the day, with repeated push-up useless messages bombarding with information. Mere information does not contribute to knowledge accumulation of wisdom in society.

In the 19th century, the fourth estate came to refer exclusively to the press, as it often greatly influenced public affairs. News readers were visiting town to town on horseback, narrating news stories printed in papers to illiterate communities. Now the, electronic media overtakes the press and …read more

Source:: Colombo Telegraph