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posted by martyb on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:20AM   Printer-friendly
from the it's-a-right-wing-thing dept.

Fake News Sharing in US is a Right-Wing Thing, Says Study

A study by researchers at Oxford University concluded that sharing fake and junk news is much more prevalent amongst Trump supporters and other people with hard right-wing tendencies.

From the Guardian:

The study, from the university's "computational propaganda project", looked at the most significant sources of "junk news" shared in the three months leading up to Donald Trump's first State of the Union address this January, and tried to find out who was sharing them and why.

"On Twitter, a network of Trump supporters consumes the largest volume of junk news, and junk news is the largest proportion of news links they share," the researchers concluded. On Facebook, the skew was even greater. There, "extreme hard right pages – distinct from Republican pages – share more junk news than all the other audiences put together.

Polarization, Partisanship and Junk News Consumption over Social Media in the US

What kinds of social media users read junk news? We examine the distribution of the most significant sources of junk news in the three months before President Donald Trump's first State of the Union Address. Drawing on a list of sources that consistently publish political news and information that is extremist, sensationalist, conspiratorial, masked commentary, fake news and other forms of junk news, we find that the distribution of such content is unevenly spread across the ideological spectrum. We demonstrate that (1) on Twitter, a network of Trump supporters shares the widest range of known junk news sources and circulates more junk news than all the other groups put together; (2) on Facebook, extreme hard right pages—distinct from Republican pages—share the widest range of known junk news sources and circulate more junk news than all the other audiences put together; (3) on average, the audiences for junk news on Twitter share a wider range of known junk news sources than audiences on Facebook's public pages.

http://comprop.oii.ox.ac.uk/research/polarization-partisanship-and-junk-news/

[Ed. note: page is loading very slowly; try a direct link to the actual report (pdf). --martyb]


Original Submission #1Original Submission #2

 
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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Unixnut on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:33AM (68 children)

    by Unixnut (5779) on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:33AM (#634824)

    I mean, "Fake news" is a nebulous concept in of itself, because it seems to be the new term for "propaganda", which is what pretty much every single news outlet is, on all sides. They are selling you a story, usually tied into whatever biases you hold.

    So, if you define that the majority of what sources republicans consider as news "fake", then yes, majority of republicans will be sharing "fake news".

    However if you were to define that the majority of what democrats use as sources "fake", you can make a study saying that the majority of democrats will be sharing "fake news"

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  • (Score: 5, Touché) by Wootery on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:48AM (41 children)

    by Wootery (2341) on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:48AM (#634826)

    Yes yes, there is no such thing as objective reality, Trump is no more a liar than any other politician, and pigs have been able to fly for decades provided you respect my idea of a pig.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by fustakrakich on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:28PM (26 children)

      by fustakrakich (6150) on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:28PM (#634845) Journal

      there is no such thing as objective reality,

      Well, there is one. Votes are sold to the highest bidder. That goes for the voters as much as it does for the crooked politicians they reelect.

      --
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      • (Score: 1, Troll) by frojack on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:33PM (25 children)

        by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:33PM (#634991) Journal

        Votes are sold to the highest bidder.
        That goes for the voters as much as it does for the crooked politicians they reelect.

        And there you have another example of Fake News. Not even 5 posts deep into this thread.

        I've been doing this crazy voting thing about 50 years, and I've never met anyone paid to vote, offer me money to vote, offer anyone I know money to vote, heard of any bids. But apparently you have. Please be specific. Name state, place, election-race, and how much was offered. Not expecting names, because then the guilty might reach out and kill you. Because that happens every day right?

        Lets face it, you've made a fake assertion.
        On a Fake Issue.

        --
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        • (Score: 2) by Wootery on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:38PM

          by Wootery (2341) on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:38PM (#634994)

          Cynicism is edgy and makes you look wise. Why ruin the guy's day?

        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:40PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:40PM (#634996)

          Cluebat: you're not the voter.

          Laws are passed by votes sold to the highest bidder.

        • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:32PM (13 children)

          by fustakrakich (6150) on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:32PM (#635051) Journal

          :-) Nice try... strawman, right? but that's not how it works, and of course you know that. As the old saying goes: Everybody votes for their wallet. And lately there is a high level of antipathy to match. But one way or another, people are in it for the money. The politicians only reflect that, or they wouldn't be so successful. A single reelection says everything about the people that vote for them.

          --
          Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
          • (Score: 1, Flamebait) by frojack on Thursday February 08 2018, @09:13PM (12 children)

            by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @09:13PM (#635202) Journal

            You're the clown who said:

            That goes for the voters as much as it does for the crooked politicians they reelect.

            Stop trying to make it about something I said.

            --
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            • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:35PM (11 children)

              by fustakrakich (6150) on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:35PM (#635250) Journal

              Yes, I said that because it's true. Your silly deflection does not apply. Crooked politicians don't just magically occupy the office for 20 years or more. It takes votes. And those votes have to be bought, not with cash, but a mere promise, and illusion of future prosperity through austerity.

              --
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              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:42AM (2 children)

                by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:42AM (#635345)

                > It takes votes. And those votes have to be bought, not with cash, but a mere promise

                Uh, isn't that how this whole "democracy" thing works? Politicians make promises, people vote for them based on those promises. Crooked or not, the process is exactly the same.

                You're not speaking against corruption or whatever, you're speaking against the very idea of democracy :/

                • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @05:10PM

                  by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @05:10PM (#635569) Journal
                  I think the problem here is not that politicians make promises, but too many voters don't hold them accountable for not following through on those promises. There is after all a fair number of people who will vote merely because a politician is willing to pretend to care about a single issue (both sides of the abortion debate are a notorious example of that).
                • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday February 09 2018, @06:11PM

                  by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday February 09 2018, @06:11PM (#635620) Journal

                  No, I'm saying democracy is only as good as its participants. Like everything else, garbage in-garbage out. People who complain about their (re)elected representatives are being very silly. Maybe they are blinded and confused by the clarity of the count. I certainly cannot share their feelings in light of the very process at their disposal that that can change things overnight should the desire ever arise.

                  --
                  Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
              • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @08:58AM (7 children)

                by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @08:58AM (#635452) Journal

                and illusion of future prosperity through austerity.

                You had me to this point. Austerity hasn't been a notable component of such promises or the subsequent spending.

                • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday February 09 2018, @01:29PM (6 children)

                  by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday February 09 2018, @01:29PM (#635489) Journal

                  Austerity has been part of the agenda since Nixon. Your other politicians might call it "reform" of some kind, which could explain the confusion, but it is austerity.

                  --
                  Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
                  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @04:09PM (5 children)

                    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @04:09PM (#635540) Journal

                    Your other politicians might call it "reform" of some kind, which could explain the confusion, but it is austerity.

                    Sorry, that's not austerity. Austerity is a recent buzzword for policies forcibly imposed on the economically more dysfunctional countries of Europe such as Greece and Cyprus. And fiscal conservatism has been a thing much longer than Nixon.

                    I would classify this whole mess of issues as voting for promises rather than actions. Promises are very cheap to deliver.

                    • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday February 09 2018, @04:57PM (4 children)

                      by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday February 09 2018, @04:57PM (#635562) Journal

                      I would classify this whole mess of issues as voting for promises

                      Yes, voters sell their votes for a promise, and they are told to reduce their expectations so the same promise can be made for reelection.

                      "fiscal conservatism" and "austerity" may differ by degree, but not in principle. One just makes the other appear more palatable. What happened in Greece and Cyprus was outright theft of government assets by the banks, pretty much what other "free trade" agreements are doing to the rest of the world.

                      --
                      Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
                      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @05:31PM (3 children)

                        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @05:31PM (#635596) Journal

                        Yes, voters sell their votes for a promise, and they are told to reduce their expectations so the same promise can be made for reelection.

                        Ok, what is supposed to be the problem with that? Sounds like the expectations are made more realistic in that case.

                        What happened in Greece and Cyprus was outright theft of government assets by the banks

                        And if it had gone the other way, it would have been theft of bank assets by those governments. Those governments have been borrowing money for a long time in bad faith and the banks had been lending in a similar bad faith. The best solution would have been for both sides to take a haircut. Have those countries go into austerity but with a portion of the loans forgiven at the expense of the banks.

                        • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday February 09 2018, @05:43PM (2 children)

                          by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday February 09 2018, @05:43PM (#635603) Journal

                          Ok, what is supposed to be the problem with that?

                          I am merely pointing out why corrupt politicians keep their jobs. It is the voters who keep them there for their own personal reasons, yet try to pass blame when things go wrong. That is the objective reality that was sarcastically being 'denied' that I was commenting on, and some people seem to have some doubts, and I am asking why they would deny some of the most obvious things about nature.

                          --
                          Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
                          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @06:19PM (1 child)

                            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @06:19PM (#635629) Journal
                            And I'm merely pointing out that managing expectations is a trait of an effective politician not necessarily a corrupt one.
                            • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday February 09 2018, @06:49PM

                              by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday February 09 2018, @06:49PM (#635647) Journal

                              Well, you're right. In absolute terms, "corruption" is a poor choice of words, taken from a non-neutral viewpoint. Maybe I sent a mixed message. I am really targeting the people who complain about politicians and the "system" in general. It is no more "corrupt" than they are.

                              --
                              Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
        • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by khallow on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:43PM (6 children)

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:43PM (#635259) Journal

          I've been doing this crazy voting thing about 50 years, and I've never met anyone paid to vote, offer me money to vote, offer anyone I know money to vote, heard of any bids.

          I have. Anyone who votes to protect funds they receive from government, be it health care payouts, Social Security, a government funding stream, etc has been successfully paid to vote.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:55AM (2 children)

            by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:55AM (#635349)

            Oh please, spare me. That's 100% of population. Of course people vote based on their (perceived) self interest. Some vote for social programs, some vote for tax cuts and military, some vote for religion...

            What's your problem anyway? I though self-interest was the holy grail of you Randian assholes. When it's other people's self-interest, now it's suddenly immoral and unfair? Boo-fucking-hoo.

            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @05:34PM

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @05:34PM (#635599) Journal

              Of course people vote based on their (perceived) self interest.

              The point here is that the future of their democracy is also in their self interest. But these programs create a conflict of interest where people are voting for the swag rather than a well operating and low corruption government.

            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @06:00PM

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @06:00PM (#635616) Journal

              When it's other people's self-interest, now it's suddenly immoral and unfair?

              You should try to understand libertarianism first. The problem here isn't that other people have self-interest, but instead that they are using the power of government to further their self-interest at the expense of many other people and the future of their country. Libertarians don't do that.

              For example, we have the sorry spectacle of a considerable portion of the developing world sacrificing the future of its youth just so the older generations can have a more comfortable retirement.

          • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Friday February 09 2018, @07:01AM (2 children)

            by aristarchus (2645) on Friday February 09 2018, @07:01AM (#635428) Journal

            Just because you have voted to protect your government contract, that does not mean everyone with a government contract does the same, khallow. Some actually provide the bid for service at the highest quality and the lowest cost. So who is your uncle that keeps you on the government tit? My god, I have known so many of these types, people with DOD positions, because they were related to high ranking officers, even though they were mentally deficient, much like the aforementioned khallow, and Ethanol_fueled. Affirmative action, y'all? So, who are your relatives, khallow? We all know you could not have gotten your job based on your native intelligence.

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            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @08:52AM (1 child)

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @08:52AM (#635449) Journal

              Some actually provide the bid for service at the highest quality and the lowest cost.

              Sounds like you've been hitting the pixie dust a bit much. But sure, I agree, there are situations where there is only one bidder and hence, trivially, the bid is highest quality and lowest cost available. It also happens to be lowest quality and highest cost, but hey, it's not my money anymore once the taxman taketh.

              So who is your uncle that keeps you on the government tit? My god, I have known so many of these types, people with DOD positions, because they were related to high ranking officers, even though they were mentally deficient, much like the aforementioned khallow, and Ethanol_fueled.

              And I thought I was triggered! I'm also still on the fence as to whether you are EF or not.

              We all know you could not have gotten your job based on your native intelligence.

              Interesting that you have moved on to purely imaginary personal attacks. Very classy.

              I remain concerned that you'll leave us in our hour of need. Who will waste our time in the future once you're gone? Does that mean EF will leave us too?

              • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Friday February 09 2018, @09:11AM

                by aristarchus (2645) on Friday February 09 2018, @09:11AM (#635456) Journal

                I remain concerned that you'll leave us in our hour of need.

                You have been saying this for years now, khallow. It is about as accurate at your other predictions, and as truthful as your assertions in this particular instance, which, by the way, is way off topic. Personal attacks? You weasel, you.

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        • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Friday February 09 2018, @05:46PM

          by Freeman (732) on Friday February 09 2018, @05:46PM (#635605) Journal

          The biggest thing I heard about from Liberal voters when Obama was running and in Office was how great "Obamacare" would be. It was going to give everyone health insurance and would reduce costs! Very soon after "Obamacare" went it effect, magically we had a significant bump Up in cost of health insurance. I also didn't hear much touting of how awesome "Obamacare" was from them, either.

          You can say, No one offers Me money to vote, but you would be wrong. The Politicans Promise, better wages, hand-outs to the needy, etc. Yes, I support helping those in need. No, I don't think we should make it so that the Only way to get by for some people is to have more children, so they can get that extra money. You know, so they can spend it on needed things like Cigarettes and Beer.

          Sure, you're not literally paid money by some shady guy in an alley for your vote. That doesn't mean politicians haven't been buying votes.

          The most interesting example I can think of is Davy Crockett. When he was running against someone, he would talk first, then invite everyone out to the bar, before the other guy could speak. Quite nearly, literally, buying their votes. Apparently, this wasn't a novelty in the era, either. https://johncashon.wordpress.com/2012/12/04/davy-crockett-and-the-coon-skin-trick/comment-page-1/ [wordpress.com]

          --
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        • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Friday February 09 2018, @06:15PM

          by fustakrakich (6150) on Friday February 09 2018, @06:15PM (#635623) Journal

          Lets face it, you've made a fake assertion.

          Did I really [jsonline.com]??

          Gee! I feel so very sorry!

          --
          Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DannyB on Thursday February 08 2018, @03:20PM (2 children)

      by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @03:20PM (#634946) Journal

      there is no such thing as objective reality,

      1. Some people say the sun rises in the East. Others say in the West. The truth lies probably somewhere in between. Or, we should give both opinions equal weight.

      2. There are no absolutes! Absolutely no absolutes! So you can't be sure of anything.

      3. There are people who believe he earth is flat. They are deeply misguided and wrong. In reality the earth is a disc with mountains and valleys, a non-smooth (eg, non-flat) surface. The sun, moon and stars revolve in a circle above the disk. Gravity is an illusion also. It is actually acceleration at 9.8 meters / second ^ 2. The disc is on the back of an infinite stack of turtles. The final turtle of that infinite stack is propelled by a rocket at 9.8 m/s^2 using a perpetual motion machine.

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      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:42PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:42PM (#634998)

        YES! This is why we need the certainty of religious doctrine.

        • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Thursday February 08 2018, @06:29PM

          by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @06:29PM (#635094) Journal

          I sense you are sarcastic, so you might instead settle for the comforting certainty of Fox News. (Surely that isn't religious doctrine.)

          Apart from that, there certainly do seem to be objective facts in the world.

          --
          Employers should not mandate wearing clothing. It should be a personal choice. It only affects me. Junk can't breathe!
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Thexalon on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:55PM (9 children)

      by Thexalon (636) on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:55PM (#635013)

      there is no such thing as objective reality

      It should be pointed out that that idea is and has always been a friend to every totalitarian regime that has ever existed. For instance, the Soviets functioned on that for decades with completely fraudulent reporting about everything and science based on nonsense like Lamarckism.

      There is objective reality. You can determine its condition and its rules by science, careful study, reason, etc. And if you don't, you will be susceptible to liars everywhere.

      --
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      • (Score: 2) by meustrus on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:38PM (6 children)

        by meustrus (4961) on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:38PM (#635182)

        Please excuse me for going off-topic here, but I'm rather curious about something.

        I dove into some biology articles following a previous story about epigenetics, and found myself confused about Lamarckism. Not as to whether it had any merit; I am not a biologist and do not claim to make any judgements as to the merit of one man's work over another's.

        No, what was confusing was the extent to which the authors wanted to make damned sure nobody thought that epigenetics even smelled like Lamarckism. Given that the overall summary of it was the idea that individual organisms make adaptations to their environments, and that those adaptations are heritable, all that I can assume is that I'm missing something.

        I know genetics doesn't work like that, and that adaptive pressure applied to generations of individuals with randomized collections of phenomes is an explanation that better matches reality. But if we can inherit behavioral, social, and apparently even gene methylation patterns, how is that fundamentally not Lamarckian? And why is it so damned important that I understand the distinction?

        My guess is that the answer lies in a combination of political history and the details of Lamarck's conclusions. I'm hoping you can provide some answers, Thexalon, since you have invoked the name and clearly hold the same opinion as to its validity.

        --
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        • (Score: 3, Informative) by Joe Desertrat on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:37PM

          by Joe Desertrat (2454) on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:37PM (#635255)

          "Lamarckism" was a mostly honest attempt to provide a mechanism for variation and heredity before it was accepted that those things were anything outside the realm of God. Lamarck ended up of course being mostly wrong, although some of his idea lives on as epigenetics. The reason that so many in the field are so adamant about separating themselves from Lamarck is that his ideas were almost invariably misrepresented to further personal agendas, for instance the example of Lysenkoism given by the AC below your post.
          If you're curious about the subject and want to fill a few holes in your knowledge, the book Blueprints: Solving the Mystery of Evolution by Maitland A. Edey and Donald C. Johansen gives a nice history in layman's terms of how the idea of evolution evolved (although they occasionally bog down in "dialogues" attempting to hammer down a point - a minor personal gripe - for one who needs it that probably helps a great deal). The book is almost worth it for the last chapter alone.

        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @05:50PM (4 children)

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @05:50PM (#635608) Journal

          No, what was confusing was the extent to which the authors wanted to make damned sure nobody thought that epigenetics even smelled like Lamarckism.

          As Joe Desertrat indicated, what they really were doing was making sure their theory didn't smell like Lysenkoism.

          But if we can inherit behavioral, social, and apparently even gene methylation patterns, how is that fundamentally not Lamarckian?

          First thing to note here is that gene methylation is actually the most credible example of potential epigenetics inheritance. Those others are based on some very weak science.

          Further, just because a change has occurred in a child organism due to epigenetics doesn't mean that it is an inherited trait. Those can be merely environmental as well with future generations unaffected by the change.

          Finally, Lamarckism is a theory about overall genetic inheritance, not merely the inheritance of a small number of traits. We know it's not true in general.

          • (Score: 2) by meustrus on Monday February 12 2018, @07:23PM (3 children)

            by meustrus (4961) on Monday February 12 2018, @07:23PM (#636790)

            First thing to note here is that gene methylation is actually the most credible example of potential epigenetics inheritance. Those others are based on some very weak science.

            I thought that the inheritance of behavioral and social traits was self-evident, and hadn't thought much about what science may have been done on the topic. I might be thinking more of language and education, which aren't normally considered "inherited" characteristics but which I believe behave in a profoundly evolutionary manner. Not that I was suggesting that any of this is biologically encoded rather than learned throughout an organism's lifetime.

            --
            If there isn't at least one reference or primary source, it's not +1 Informative. Maybe the underused +1 Interesting?
            • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday February 13 2018, @02:21AM (2 children)

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 13 2018, @02:21AM (#636942) Journal
              Now that you described how these evolve, what does this have to do with Lamarckism? The classic example was speculation about giraffes, that giraffes got those long necks because some animal had to stretch its neck to eat leaves. Then that need to stretch the neck (rather than Darwism's counterview that giraffes with longer necks were the survivors) became an inherited characteristic with children having longer necks as a result and eventually ending up at present where apparently there is no further need to stretch the neck longer.

              The cultural analogue might be immigrants from some part of the equatorial regions who don't celebrate any sort of winter holiday move to the Arctic Circle and start celebrating Christmas. Does that mean that there are genetic changes in any subsequent children as a result to celebrate Christmas better?
              • (Score: 2) by meustrus on Tuesday February 13 2018, @02:52PM (1 child)

                by meustrus (4961) on Tuesday February 13 2018, @02:52PM (#637118)

                Of course it doesn't mean genetic change. But given Lamarck's time in history I really doubt any of it had to do with genetics.

                The profound difference is, as you say, that adaptation during an organism's life is passed down to offspring rather than randomized variations resulting in different biology that win out over generations of natural selection. The question is: does the evolution of knowledge more often follow the former pattern or the latter? How often do we humans get it right and pass the truth on to our children, and how often do we just generate a huge number of hypotheses for only a few correct ones to survive?

                --
                If there isn't at least one reference or primary source, it's not +1 Informative. Maybe the underused +1 Interesting?
                • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday February 13 2018, @03:20PM

                  by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 13 2018, @03:20PM (#637136) Journal

                  Of course it doesn't mean genetic change. But given Lamarck's time in history I really doubt any of it had to do with genetics.

                  To the contrary, it does. Lamarck and Darwin didn't know how traits were stored in the organism, but they were quite able to speculate on how those traits were passed on.

                  The question is: does the evolution of knowledge more often follow the former pattern or the latter?

                  It follows neither pattern. The key difference is that knowledge can become greatly modified over the course of a single human's lifespan (even in the days before civilization and the potential for massive technological progress) and can be passed on by a variety of means other than inheritance. Meanwhile inherited biological traits remain very similar as they are passed on. The genetics of a grandchild is not very different from that of the grandmother, but the knowledge and beliefs can be very different and come from sources other than the grandchild's ancestors.

      • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @09:14PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @09:14PM (#635204)
        Lamarckism? Try Lysenkoism [wikipedia.org]. This pseudoscience, which unfortunately fit Soviet ideology closely, actually resulted in the deaths of millions in the Soviet Union due to famine because it was the basis for their misguided agricultural policy.
      • (Score: 2) by Wootery on Friday February 09 2018, @10:05AM

        by Wootery (2341) on Friday February 09 2018, @10:05AM (#635459)

        I'm guessing you didn't read the rest of my comment.

    • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @07:45PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @07:45PM (#635153)

      Yes yes, there is no such thing as objective reality,

      Sure there is; there is no gender pay gap and only two genders. Yet we frequently see fake news from the mainstream left claiming otherwise.

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:57AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:57AM (#634829)

    Being someone who votes for or against both parties I disagree.

    Many of the things I see tucker or hannity push these days requires me to not know certain things in procedure that they conveniently leave out of their commentary.

    This is not something I see with maddow. Though when she hits her stride she does at times try to force a round peg in a square hole.

    And I used to love tucker over bugala since bugala was so pretentious. So I should like him but instead I see him as disingenuous now

    Case in point the uranium reports. Hannity and tucker showed why they are opinion “experts” and Shepard Smith had to explain it with the details Hannity and tucker would always leave out. Important details.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by c0lo on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:13PM (9 children)

    by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:13PM (#634834) Journal

    Surely it depends on what you define as fake news?

    Fake news: alt-facts pushed to your tribe attention for them to drum as noisily as possible and drawn other news.
    Alt-facts: facts that are factually incorrect - aka lies.

    (And no, Goebbels seems to have been more intelligent than to say truth becomes the greatest enemy of the State. [stackexchange.com], but Hitler was a fan of the big lie [wikipedia.org])

    In other words: you are trolled, stop whinging and deal with it.

    --
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:16PM

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:16PM (#634836) Journal

      s/drawn/drown/

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by stormwyrm on Thursday February 08 2018, @01:07PM (7 children)

      by stormwyrm (717) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @01:07PM (#634870) Journal

      While Goebbels may not have said such a thing outright, it does seem that such sentiments were indeed expressed by the Nazis:

      Nazi theory indeed specifically denies that such a thing as ‘the truth’ exists. There is, for instance, no such thing as ‘Science’. There is only ‘German Science’, ‘Jewish Science’, etc. The implied objective of this line of thought is a nightmare world in which the Leader, or some ruling clique, controls not only the future but the past. If the Leader says of such and such an event, ‘It never happened’ — well, it never happened. If he says that two and two are five — well, two and two are five. This prospect frightens me much more than bombs — and after our experiences of the last few years that is not a frivolous statement. — George Orwell, Looking Back on the Spanish War [orwell.ru]

      --
      Numquam ponenda est pluralitas sine necessitate.
      • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:10PM (6 children)

        by FatPhil (863) <reversethis-{if.fdsa} {ta} {tnelyos-cp}> on Thursday February 08 2018, @04:10PM (#634974) Homepage
        QI S15 E13 "Omnishambles" a week or so back had an interesting example of some real English fake news from nearly 100 years back. (**igger warning: feminists might be **iggered by what they year. (I Bowdlerise **igger, as I know some are **iggered by the word **igger)) As a fan of the program, I encourage you to just find and watch the whole episode (the "XL" version contains some less-controlled moments that are left out of the shorter version of the program), such that you too might become hooked.
        --
        I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Azuma Hazuki on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:27PM (3 children)

          by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:27PM (#635174) Journal

          It seems to me it's mostly the right that gets, well, triggered easily. I mean, hell, look at them trying to undermine our entire secular nation-state's basis in order not to have their feelings hurt by seeing people who think/believe/love/whatever differently than they do actually living their lives. They project a helluva lot too. I don't know anything even close to the John Birch society on the left.

          --
          I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
          • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:38PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @11:38PM (#635282)

            I don't know anything even close to the John Birch society on the left.

            If you were to conveniently overlook every single left wing advocacy and protest group then you would have a point.

          • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @12:39AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @12:39AM (#635315)

            Hmm, while I agree that conservatives are more easily upset in general there are quite a few liberal groups pushing agendas. Care to elaborate a little more? How is PETA not a liberal version of John Birch?

          • (Score: 2) by hemocyanin on Friday February 09 2018, @06:03AM

            by hemocyanin (186) on Friday February 09 2018, @06:03AM (#635405) Journal

            Well the Center-Right (aka Democrats) are doing their darndest to start a new cold war with the potential for global thermonuclear destruction with Russsia, so let's not give the Right all the credit.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:59AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @01:59AM (#635352)

          > (I Bowdlerise **igger, as I know some are **iggered by the word **igger)

          It might have been on purpose, but you should still probably "bowdlerize" some letters in the middle instead :)

          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday February 09 2018, @08:55AM

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @08:55AM (#635451) Journal
            I bet he hodls bitcoins.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by stormwyrm on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:27PM

    by stormwyrm (717) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @12:27PM (#634844) Journal
    In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it. It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it. Not merely the validity of experience, but the very existence of external reality, was tacitly denied by their philosophy. The heresy of heresies was common sense. And what was terrifying was not that they would kill you for thinking otherwise, but that they might be right. For, after all, how do we know that two and two make four? Or that the force of gravity works? Or that the past is unchangeable? If both the past and the external world exist only in the mind, and if the mind itself is controllable – what then? — George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four.
    --
    Numquam ponenda est pluralitas sine necessitate.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by isostatic on Thursday February 08 2018, @02:58PM

    by isostatic (365) on Thursday February 08 2018, @02:58PM (#634939) Journal

    This is quite evidently fake news:

    The launch of the falcon heavy has caused a flood in China *insert picture of 2011 floods in Brazil*, causing the leader or Wuhan province to be executed at dawn.

    There's no bias here, there's just multiple things that simply are not objectively true

    Snopes has been full of "fake news" for years, stuff that is objectively false -- like "the Eagles telling Trump 'fuck you'"

    This is different to "News I don't agree with", or "Opinion that's a real stretch".

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DeathMonkey on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:17PM (3 children)

    by DeathMonkey (1380) on Thursday February 08 2018, @05:17PM (#635034) Journal

    Surely it depends on what you define as fake news?

    Things that are objectively false, yet reported as news.

    See, it's not that hard!

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:20PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:20PM (#635240)

      It's the "objectively false" part that gets them. Actually, many people out there don't believe that such a thing exists. An unnamed White House aide during the Bush Administration was famously quoted [nytimes.com]:

      The aide said that guys like me were "in what we call the reality-based community," which he defined as people who "believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality." ... "That's not the way the world really works anymore," he continued. "We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors ... and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @12:10AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 09 2018, @12:10AM (#635299)

      Things that are objectively false, yet reported as news.

      See, it's not that hard!

      Correct. Trump has a 4% higher approval rating than Obama did at this time in his presidency. What would that number be without the massive fake news smear campaign courtesy of the FBI, the DOJ, Soros, Clinton, Brock, McCain and Fusion GPS?

      • (Score: 2) by Joe Desertrat on Monday February 12 2018, @10:34PM

        by Joe Desertrat (2454) on Monday February 12 2018, @10:34PM (#636855)

        Correct. Trump has a 4% higher approval rating than Obama did at this time in his presidency. What would that number be without the massive fake news smear campaign

        Obama's approval rating was the result of an even more aggressive and highly financed "massive fake news smear campaign". The sort of campaign that had people claiming they loved the ACA but hated "Obamacare", Obama was not born in the US, Obama is a Muslim, etc., etc.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by edIII on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:23PM (6 children)

    by edIII (791) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:23PM (#635173)

    Bullshit. Fake News is incredibly easy to define. It is news that was fabricated as to have the imprimatur of MSM (hold the laughter please), for a specific purpose, and delivered to a specific audience. When Russia was paying Facebook via its troll network, they were posting lies and propaganda, but doing so as to appear from legitimate trusted sources of news. Hence, it was news that was faked.

    This is not something you can pull that both sides crap on. The majority of fake news was heavily slanted towards making Orange Anus look electable, and Hillary to look worse than she already does. Although I will admit, that is not from first hand experiences. I watch no advertisements of any kind, and I have ZERO presence within social media (no this site isn't social media). So what would I know about fake news other than the cerebral discussions about it. Fake News does not make its way here though, and I largely attribute that to our great group of editors.

    Most people aren't getting their news anymore from the major so-called trusted outlets of news, but are getting it from each other on social media. Whoever sounds the best and loudest, gets promulgated further throughout those networks pushing the lies.

    Now, when somebody says Fake News, 99% of the time they're full of fucking shit. It's become a retort when you don't like the truth coming to the surface. Don't attack the truth with reason, logic, or well founded positions based on sound principles, but simply loudly claim it was faked news. That's Orange Anus's favorite move. Deny, Deny, Deny, Deny, and when the truth is plain for all to see, simply deny reality in its entirety and scream "fake news".

    It's funny how people didn't like Orange Anus being compared to Hitler, but Hitler attacked the press in much the same ways.

    --
    Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by Azuma Hazuki on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:29PM

      by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:29PM (#635176) Journal

      Preach it, brother. The Trump types project like a mile of movie theaters, thinking if they accuse others of what they themselves are guilty of, it somehow absolves them. It's cowardly, hypocritical, and amoral, not even immoral. But they, of course *being* immoral, don't give a shit.

      --
      I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Unixnut on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:54PM

      by Unixnut (5779) on Thursday February 08 2018, @08:54PM (#635190)

      Truth to be honest, I don't actually care. I'm not American, and I don't support either side of the same turd coin that the majority of you seem to cheer for.

      However, due to the size and capacity of the USA, and their global reach (and because every single Tech site in English seems to have a selection of Americans willing to rant about it), I can't help but get constant "Fake news" information from basically both sides of the coin. And it is always the same crap:

      News item: "Trump gets pissed on by prostitutes/Colluded with Russians/Stole election"
      R's: "Fake News"
      D's: "Gospel Truth"

      News item: "Hillary colluded with Russians for uranium/tried to steal election/$some_reason, etc..."
      R's: "Gospel Truth"
      D's: "Fake News"

      And so on and so on. Every single piece of news is either "Gospel Truth" or "Fake news". There is no way to actually have a reasoned debate about it.

      "Fake News" has just become a moniker, yet another way to divide Americans bitterly. Just look at the responses on the site. I imagine some posters were literally foaming at the mouth as they typed their retorts.

      And like you nicely put, it has been devalued to the point of meaningless. Anyone can define "fake news" just like they can define "hate speech". It is a very dangerous precedent, that people seem to be missing in their strong urge to beat upon "the other side".

      Sure, you can claim it once had a clearly defined meaning (just like "hate speech" did), but as always in politics, its get redefined, and twisted and turned to suit the purposes of whoever is using it.

      If "fake news" was just limited to the USA, I might not even care that much, however now my local politicians have taken to defining news which they disapprove of as "fake news", which really complicates the ability to have a reasoned debate. Plus you can't accuse them of stifling the opposition/alternative viewpoints because they just point to that "Bastion of Free speech"/"Leader of the free world", the USA, so if the US can do it, so can they.

      How do you debate with someone whose starting argument is that everything you say is fake, and therefore not worth responding to? For many, the result is to just declare that the other sides news is also "fake", and then you get a societal split with two echo chambers self reinforcing their reality.

      Not to mention this has got two sides of America locked in an increasingly bitter (and violent) conflict, while your country is degrading, the economy is going to shit, and we are teetering on the edge of possibly another big war in the middle east that could escalate quickly into a global confrontation.

      Talk about a case of a population wide "missing the forest for the trees".

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by digitalaudiorock on Thursday February 08 2018, @09:21PM (1 child)

      by digitalaudiorock (688) on Thursday February 08 2018, @09:21PM (#635211)

      Bullshit. Fake News is incredibly easy to define.

      Yes...despite Trump and the right trying to portray a slight slant to the left as equivalent to fucking #Pizzagate. Give me a fucking break with that.

    • (Score: 3, Offtopic) by hemocyanin on Friday February 09 2018, @06:12AM (1 child)

      by hemocyanin (186) on Friday February 09 2018, @06:12AM (#635408) Journal

      Hillary voted for the Iraq war with enthusiasm: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HtK9AzcU42g [youtube.com]

      Her only beef with GWB, at 13:29: "Here at home, this administration is bankrupting our economy forcing us to make the worst kids of false choices between national and homeland security, which they don't fund."

      In other words -- raise taxes to fund more wars and domestic surveillance.

      That's all fact -- her own damn words.

      You don't get to make a "mistake" like HRC did on Iraq, and say "oopsie". She was, is, and will always be, an evil murderous cretin who deserved to lose. And losing to Trump? That's just fucking icing on the cake - seriously, how incompetent do you have to be? Talk about a slap across the face, she can now go shrivel up in shame and leave the world a better place.

      • (Score: 2) by edIII on Friday February 09 2018, @07:55PM

        by edIII (791) Subscriber Badge on Friday February 09 2018, @07:55PM (#635673)

        Is this a segue-way to a different conversation? :)

        I was on the Hillary hating bandwagon before 2000. It was shortly after she made such a fuss about health care, and then basically did a 180, started taking money from the opposition to entertain them at dinner. To make it clear, for me, that's like Luke Skywalker giving multiple hour long speeches to young Rebels, then turning about and asking the Emperor if wants another mimosa before going down on him. Maybe I was unfair at the time, but her subsequent actions showed that she really did start blowing the 1%. She's a darling of the "Left", but is nothing more than an Establishment Democrat with Corporate handlers.

        So yeah, I said Hillary was being made to look worse than she already did. They needed to go so far as to make her a vampiric kiddie fucker with basement operations under various pizza establishments, one in particular. That's some pretty spectacular Fake News, exceeded only its ridiculousness, by the gullibility of those that found it true.

        --
        Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:05PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:05PM (#635230)

    The authors of the paper have their own definition of fake news (they prefer the term "junk news"), starting on page 2 of their paper [ox.ac.uk], which is really very clear:

    We identified sources of junk news and information, based on a grounded typology. Sources of junk news deliberately publish misleading, deceptive or incorrect information purporting to be real news about politics, economics or culture. This content includes various forms of extremist, sensationalist, conspiratorial, masked commentary, fake news and other forms of junk news.

    It does not seem to coincide with the definition which you have decided to use. Not even close. There is nothing about party distinctions in the definition, and it could just as easily apply to the left wing as well as the right wing. However, this thing in their definition about "misleading, deceptive or incorrect information" depends upon a stubborn thing called "objective reality", and if you're not one of those people who believes such a thing exists, then well, it's not going to make any sense at all.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:32PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 08 2018, @10:32PM (#635246)

      deliberately publish

      Pffft! [google.com]