Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Is it so wrong?

Is it so wrong that I want people to cite their sources when they post politically-incendiary things on Facebook and the like? I'm fairly liberal, and I want to believe that people are getting their news from reputable sources, but I'm not so sure they all are. And this is on both sides of the liberal/conservative line.

I'm not trying to be a jerk, I just think that real messages can be obscured and cheapened by hyperbole masquerading as fact.
That said, I do think there are a lot of terrible (and also wonderful!) things that happen, and I like that people are sharing the news.

Just sayin'.


ayelle said...

Nope, it's not wrong. I agree.

ayelle said...

Expanded, I don't *think* I do this, but if I do, just ask for clarification and I will do my best to comply.

Admittedly, I have found that my personal feelings can rise up if I think I am perceiving an unwarranted, ideologically-motivated challenge against material that's from a source I consider valid -- but still, it's an important conversation to have.

We are dealing with a new paradigm of information sharing. The person-on-the-street can now share photos, videos, and eyewitness accounts of inflammatory incidents that don't carry the stamp of "official news source". Some skepticism is warranted -- especially of unsourced, lone blog posts, presented without names or other corroborating details. By contrast, when multiple cameras and eyewitness report very similar accounts of stories (that news sources aren't covering because they all turned off their livefeeds and sent their helicopters away before the police moved in -- that was Oakland), that body of non-official reports also has to be taken as an important source of information.

So, we may have to redefine our definition of what constitutes a valid source. We continually have to question our own ideological motivations in posting something. But the question is an important one and it is always a conversation worth having, as long as everyone is participating in it honestly.