Fake news

There are some end of year traditions that we all look forward to, and one of mine is looking back over the last 12 months and listening again to some of what we feel were the best stories we told. For years, the cable network C-SPAN has toured the country in a well-equipped bus visiting schools, book fairs and state capitols.

Today on the Best of Our Knowledge, we’ll re-take our tour of the C-SPAN bus.

CNN anchor and correspondent Jake Tapper is known for his hard-nosed interviews that seek to get at the truth of our contentious times. But now in his new novel, Tapper turns his attention to another fractious period in U.S. history.

In "The Hellfire Club," a political thriller set in 1950s Washington, Tapper writes about a time when the Red Scare and McCarthyism ruled the city.

As for the day job - Tapper hosts “The Lead” and “State of the Union” on CNN and brings attention to some of the biggest political headlines. Tapper talks to us about the inspiration for his foray into fiction, his life as a journalist, and which recent news stories have captured his full attention.

On Tuesday, February 28th, 2017, the LBJ Presidential Library held An Evening With Cokie Roberts
LBJ Library

Cokie Roberts, one of America’s leading broadcast journalists, is a long-time reporter, news analyst, and commentator for National Public Radio; a commentator and analyst for ABC News; and a regular roundtable analyst for "This Week with George Stephanopoulos."

She was in Albany, New York this week for two events with the New York State Writers Institute. She joined us to talk about her career, journalism and current events.

Fake News: What Does It Mean?

Apr 24, 2018
Wikimedia Commons/Sollok29

In an information age, it can be hard to tell the difference between truth and fiction, especially online. Misinformation can lead to faulty decision making, making it even more important for the public to understand the danger of fake news.

Salman Rushdie
Wall Street Journal

The New York State Writers Institute and the UAlbany Speaker Series presents Salman Rushdie in an afternoon craft talk and evening presentation on Thursday, April 19.

Rushdie's new novel is The New York Times bestseller, "The Golden House," a parable of contemporary America set against the backdrop of current American culture and politics. We spoke with Rushdie on The Book Show when the book was published and this is an encore presentation of that interview.

From the explosion of fake news to the challenges of the 24 hour news cycle, legendary journalist Bob Schieffer examines political journalism today and those who practice it. Based on interviews with over 40 media leaders, Schieffer provides an inside look at the changing role of media and asks whether today’s citizens are more informed or just overwhelmed.

Bob Schieffer is one of broadcast journalism’s most experienced Washington reporters. He was anchor and moderator of Face the Nation, CBS News’ Sunday public affairs broadcast from May 1991 to June 2015. He also served as CBS News’ chief Washington correspondent from 1982 to 2015. Schieffer covered Washington for CBS News for 46 years and is one of the few broadcast or print journalists to have covered all four major beats in the nation’s capital—the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department, and Capitol Hill. 

Schieffer was in Albany, NY, last Friday moderating a discussion on fake news, information overload and media literacy for the New York State Writers Institute. He stopped by The Roundtable to talk with Joe Donahue about his newest book Overload: Finding the Truth in Today's Deluge of News.

The New York State Writers Institute’s Telling the Truth in a Post-Truth World is a multi-day forum which will explore timely topics critical to an open democratic society including the rise of "fake news" and "alternative facts;" pressures on the First Amendment and a free press; media literacy; information overload; hacking and cybersecurity; and issues of race and class, among others.

Featured appearances will include Kurt Andersen, journalist, editor, radio host, and author of the new book Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500-Year History; Bob Schieffer, former anchor of CBS Evening News and Face the Nation; Floyd Abrams, the nation's preeminent First Amendment lawyer; Lydia Polgreen, editor-in-chief of HUFFPOST and more than two dozen prominent journalists, editors, historians, and authors. 

Author and journalist Paul Grondahl is the Director of The New York State Writer’s Institute and he joins us along with Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and founder and Executive Director of the Writers Institute, William Kennedy.

Russia and the 2016 presidential election — it’s either a significant breach or “fake news.”

In today’s Congressional Corner, Connecticut Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty, a Democrat from the fifth district, continues her conversation with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

Reality. It used to seem so simple—reality just was, like the weather. Why question it, let alone disagree about it? And then came the assault, an unending stream of “fake news,” “alternative facts,” and lies disguised as truths that is overwhelming our notions of reality. Now we can’t even agree on what a fact is, let alone what is real. How on earth did we get here?
         
Every week, the award-winning journalist Brooke Gladstone, along with her co-host Bob Garfield, reaches 1.2 million listeners through more than 420 NPR affiliate stations with WNYC Studios' On the Media, a shrewd and witty newsmagazine that analyzes media and how it shapes our perceptions of the world.

Her new book is The Trouble with Reality: A Rumination on Moral Panic in Our Time.

President Trump is dismissing his poll numbers as “fake news.”

In today’s Congressional Corner, Congressional Quarterly’s David Hawkings tells WAMC’s Alan Chartock that the new commander-in-chief doth protest too much.

A UMass survey found 14 percent of Trump supporters say more people are in the bottom photo. Why?
Associated Press

An article in the Washington Post caught our eye the other day. It described a study that looks into how respondents’ political beliefs may influence the way they answered simple questions about one of the persistent political scandals of our era — crowd size at the Trump inauguration. UMass Amherst Professor Brian Schaffner, director of the UMass poll, co-wrote the article. He spoke with WAMC’s Ian Pickus about the experiment and its findings.