A few months ago, our awesomely moronic president sent a personal note to Rich Lowry handwritten on his published article. Lowry then tweeted the image with a note that Trump probably didn’t read the article. In it, Lowry was critical of Trump’s brashness, in spite of ‘Trumpism’ aka populism being popular. It was not flattering. Duh.
I thought this was particularly funny because Trump had fallen victim to fake news. He thought the title of an article was good, when actually the content was not. In this case, the link-bait titled version of the article (Original title = There Is No ‘Without Trump’) is another form of fake news. Since we know Trump doesn’t read, you could just as easily write an article “Trump Saves the Government” which he would probably love. But the article could be about how he hasn’t done any bureaucratic reform because he is so incompetent and can’t hire anyone to serve in senior positions. The title is grammatically correct, but is slanted towards letting supporters share it, without reading the text. Fake News?
Recently, this kind of stuff struck closer to home. This is a lesson in how Facebook sucks and has the ability to shape hearts and minds. In my case it’s funny. With the election, changing hearts and minds by targeting untrue stories with link-bait titles to unsuspecting consumers, can shift opinion. It can change your voting choice. That ABSOLUTELY DID AFFECT THE ELECTION. And fake-news is the cause. Do paid ads also affect public opinion? Yes, but they cost a hell of a lot more, and that is why the FEC made the candidate actually stand up and say “My name is xxx and I approve this message.” And the press, which Trump condemns for having the audacity to criticize him, points out falsities in ads, and then they come down. No metering infrastructure exists in Facebook, because the Zuck used to insist they were not a news platform. OK brau.
How easy is it to fool someone?
It’s no surprise that I like snow, winter and cold. Sara, on the other hand, likes the summer and hot. So one day we were joking about how we had the wrong birthdays. My July 27, is great for her. And her Jan 16, is perfect for me. If I want to celebrate by going skiing- done. If Sara wants to plan a beach day- score. We decided that we should just switch when we celebrate our birthdays and then see how people react. Step 1, change Facebook.
Sara changed her profile on the 15th. I switched mine on the 16th. Some close family and friends played along jokingly, but I still got 23 messages and a few texts saying “Happy Birthday”. I don’t fault anyone. Hell I would have done it too. Facebook told me so.
I’m sure our little joking experiment in birthday swapping will come back to bite me one day. Some orange fat guy, who can’t speak in full sentences is bound to build an entire political persona based on demanding to see my birth certificate and that my campaign is lying to “the people”. What a fake-news scandal that will be.