Mon. Dec 6th, 2021

Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex revealed today at the RE: WIRED conference that he had emailed Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. January 8 riots in the capital To warn him that “his platform was allowing a coup to take place. That email was sent the day before and then it happened and I haven’t heard from him since.”

Twitter declined to comment. But the fact remains that the Duke of Sussex takes misinformation and media manipulation seriously. For him, it’s personal. “I have learned from a very young age that the motivation for publication does not necessarily combine with the motivation for truth,” he said, especially since the UK press tends to make a profit with the objective. “They have successfully turned truth-based news into opinion-based gossip with devastating consequences,” he added. “I know this story very well. I lost my mother to this self-inflicted insanity, and obviously I am determined to lose the mother of my children for the same thing. “

Harry spoke as part of a panel on misinformation, led by Renee Deresta, technical research manager at Stanford Internet Observatory, led by Steven Levy, editor of WIRED-A-Large-A-Large, and Rashad Robin, vice-president of the Aspen Commission on Information Disorders. And President of Color of Change.

How did the truth of the Internet and the basic ideals of democracy become so distorted? And how do we straighten out the whole thing?

“Misinformation always existed,” said Diresta “What’s different now is the way it spreads, the speed at which it spreads and the way each person participates in transferring information from their community to other communities.” This unique spread of information results in what DiResta calls “ideal reality, a place where people tend to associate with very like-minded people.”

Such underlying communities are particularly at risk for “ampliganda”, a term DiResta designed to capture how social media users have become not just content creators, but content promoters. In practice, this often extends to content that annoys us “because that content is being pushed into our feed.”

Speaking about the impact of social justice on these activities, Robinson said, “The truth of the matter is that inequality, injustice, all these things are not as unfortunate as a car accident. It’s part of the design.” According to Robinson, these platforms profited from the hatred and fear that helped drive the false narrative around the progress of the Black Lives Matter protest of 2020 and voter suppression strategies led by last year’s election. “We have a set of self-regulated entities,” he said, “and self-regulated entities are unregulated entities.” Robinson added that the Aspen Commission on Information Disorders (an organization with which he, Deresta and Prince Harry are all involved) was working on a set of recommendations to reduce losses, increase transparency and build trust online.

In the end, the media is both concerned and optimistic about the future of rhetoric, says Prince Harry. By removing the damage from these platforms, everyone benefits, but the necessary changes will not come without the cooperation of the media ecosystem, social media engineers and conscientious advertisers. “It’s not about pulling the plug,” said Prince Harry “It’s about literally clearing up so that everyone can work, come into these communities, online and off, and welcome, whatever they are, what they represent, and what they believe in – but let us share one. There needs to be reality. “

Updated 11/09/2021 8:30 pm ET: This story has been updated to include more details from the panel.

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