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Response to Jeroen de Ridder’s 'So What if 'Fake News' is Fake News?'


Coady, D, Response to Jeroen de Ridder's 'So What if 'Fake News' is Fake News?', Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective, 8, (12) pp. 25-28. ISSN 2471-9560 (2019) [Non Refereed Article]

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It is tempting to accept the studies de Ridder (2019) cites in support of my position that the fake news scare has been "overhyped". However, since I have argued there is no fake news problem at all, I cannot accept studies according to which there is such a problem, albeit one that it is not as bad as is commonly supposed. It is true that I am opposed to overhyping the problem of fake news, but it is a misleading truth, because it doesn’t go far enough.1 For precisely the same reason, it is true, but highly misleading, to say that the witch problem in medieval Europe was overhyped. It was overhyped, not because it was only a minor problem, but because it was not a problem at all. Now, as then, the real problem was not the alleged phenomenon ("witches" or "fake news"), but widespread hysteria, and consequent repressive measures, over a non-existent problem. It’s true that Pope Alexander VI overhyped the witch problem, but any hype at all would have been overhype.

Item Details

Item Type:Non Refereed Article
Keywords:fake news, conspiracy theories, post-truth, media
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Political science
Research Field:Political theory and political philosophy
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in philosophy and religious studies
UTAS Author:Coady, D (Dr David Coady)
ID Code:139167
Year Published:2019
Deposited By:Office of the School of Humanities
Deposited On:2020-05-28
Last Modified:2020-06-30

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