The American Bear

Sunshine/Lollipops

Messing With Our Minds: The Ever Finer Line Between News and Advertising | Kingsley Dennis (3)

In terms of mainstream news reporting, it is always important to check the source when reading a news item; that is, is it from an independent source or is it, “according to a government source,” etcetera. The mainstream media is largely fed via global news services, the two largest being Reuters (now Thomson Reuters) and Associated Press. This again constitutes a centralization of news information. While both organizations do much fine and accurate news reporting - which, valuable as it is, may unfortunately be taken by some as adequate proof that the news is not manipulated - when such sources (especially through PR offices) disseminate information as “truthful news,” they are doing nothing more than was parodied in Orwell’s “1984” as Newspeak. Independent media, such as is now coming of age and maturity on the Internet, has served to counterneutralize some of the overwhelming persuasive power of the mainstream media propaganda. For this reason, there are concerted efforts underway to curtail the supposedly “wild” and “uncensored” nature of the Internet. In other words, this means that there is considerable corporate and political will to rein in the Internet under the umbrella of corporate and governmental/state control, or at least, to surveil its use.

What has changed the game plan over the past two decades has been the rise of distributed and decentralized global communications between individuals. The Internet in particular, as well as other forms of social media, have spurred the growth of individuals seeking information between and among themselves, a process which is often external to the consensus of various nation-states. This has had the effect of shifting people away from conditioned patterns of propaganda and belief systems. This bottom-up intervention has seriously compromised the patterning techniques of ruling authorities. There are now efforts underway to censor information sites that are critical of the state. It is therefore imperative that our independent media be protected, our social networks of free speech preserved, and our right to seek and speak the truth defended. Messing with our minds has no place in a truly democratic and egalitarian future.