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Good. The 21st-century internet has created a crisis of credibility. We've learned that "information wants to be free" and "The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it" applies just as well to lies as it does to factual information. We are in a storm of misinformation, and have been for many years.

I don't love the 500lb gorillas of mainstream media, but they have skin in the game if they get caught pushing falsehood. Look at men who've trainwrecked their careers over getting caught in a lie - Olbermann, Dan Rather, etc.

Can you imagine smaller no-name media sources facing any real consequences in that kind of situation? No.

We need credibility again. Until somebody finds a way to algorithmize credibility, I'm happy with saying "only the big boys are assumed to be credible by aggregators".




People who have a different worldview are probably just going to bury this, but in case it is useful information to anyone, I will write it anyway.

To make it easier for people to accept the premise, let's suppose that we are not concerned about the United States. Say we are worried about some other countries.

The issue is that when only a relatively small number of the largest media companies show up in the results, that makes it easier for state or corporate interests to control the information stream that citizens receive. If smaller, independent outlets were surfaced more often, it would mean that in order to push any particular narrative effectively, there would be that many more media outlets to control. It could make it much more difficult for a government or special interest to propagandize, since they would need to influence a very large number of independent outlets.

And again I realize that many people here may not believe that government propaganda still exists in American media. But I think that most can agree that it does happen in many other countries at least.


This assumes that an endless array of small media sources is more difficult to control than large ones. I'd say that's false. An endless array of small media sources can just as easily be all traced back to a single controller. That's actually the business model of Sinclair media, for example.

But because smaller media sources are forgettable and have fewer eyeballs checking them, there's no record when they do something unethical like the large companies.

Rathergate would not happen with some small, forgettable news source. The falsehood would be pushed and unquestioned because nobody wants to play whack-a-mole.


Boiling down credibility to outright lies is far too simplistic.

The 'big boys' have more than enough bias, and tricks up their sleeve to bend the story to their liking.


The problem is that "the big boys" lack just as much credibility in 2019 as anyone else. The fact that they constantly push government narratives doesn't make them any more credible. Google pushing of the "big boy" outlets is an attempt to make them seem more credible.


You're implying NYT has the same credibility as Infowars. Don't know in what dimension such a statement could be true, but it certainly isn't ours.

Also, the current government under Trump despises most of the big boys for obvious reason, so pretending they constantly push government narratives again highlights quite a distorted sense of reality.


NYT certainly doesn't have the same credibility as Infowars, but their name has certainly been tarnished.

Just look at Pulitzers awarded for the Collusion story that's been proven to be fake. Or the anti-semitic cartoon they were forced to withdraw last month.


If you go to the Pulitzer site, they link to the stories that the NYT was given the prize for. You should probably go read them yourself. None of them are fake. It was good reporting.

Somebody may have told you they were fake, but you should stop listening to them and go read the stories yourself.


Former NYT columnist and Pulitzer prize winner Chris Hedges now works for RT. Does that mean that RT is credible, or that Hedges has become less credible? Neither. It means that neither Google or the US government should be deciding which news outlets are credible any more I would trust Google to work in partnership with the Russian government to decide who is credible.


No I'm claiming that the NYT is less credible than they used to be, and not more credible than many other, smaller news outlets. Perhaps "establishment narrative| is more accurate than, "government narrative". If you are interested in understanding what this narrative is, go read Manufacturing Consent again or any of the dozens of books that have been written on the bias of US corporate media.


Bloomberg pushed the likely false China hacking story. Most mainstream media pushed the likely false Russiagate story. Doesn't look like they have much "skin in the game if they get caught pushing falsehood".




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