The genius of this simultaneously simple and profound phrase comes from its naked embrace of the fact that some stories are too good to verify and must be shared as soon as possible.
The standards once applied to reporting are now often reserved for correction writing. […] If you tell me that a lunatic killed twenty kids in an elementary school, that gives me enough to process for a while. I can wait a few minutes or a few hours (or even a few days) to learn about the details about the shooter’s psyche or his relationship with his deceased mother. But these days, it seems, no one producing news can wait. But someone has to wait. Little value for journalists or their readership is created in the race to be first. We need a media that races to be right.
Perhaps we ought to be a little more understanding of the compromises involved in creating art, and that getting bent out of shape once certain liberties are exposed (when just a minute ago we were so thoroughly enthralled!) seems a reaction based more on our uneasiness with our own vulnerability and credulousness than any serious authorial wrongdoing.
Truth and falsity properly considered are properties of language, not of images.
You can never be both a writer and a politician – at least not a good writer. A writer must always tell the truth as he sees it, and a politician must never give the game away. Now, these are two opposing forces.
If there are more stories about this, in-depth ones, I am afraid Glass is going to conclude We wanted to believe. That is going to be his deepest comment on this. I hope I’m wrong. I don’t agree with that assessment. I think the real problem is We wanted things to be simple.
When we’re shown an image we tend to let our guard down. People learn how to read critically and think critically, but I don’t believe we learn how to see critically.
The confidence that people have in their beliefs is not a measure of the quality of evidence, it is not a judgment of the quality of the evidence but it is a judgment of the coherence of the story that the mind has managed to construct.
New research finds we’re more likely to believe a piece of false information conveyed in a television drama after two weeks have passed.
Okay yeah yeah yeah you can find any number of things “a recent study” will tell you. But I like this because it makes me think of Tyler Cowen’s talk on being suspicious of stories, which I have listened to probably 6 or 7 times and will do so again starting… now. (via)
Philosophy and jokes proceed from the same impulse: to confound our sense of the way things are, to flip our worlds upside down, and to ferret out hidden, often uncomfortable, truths about life. What the philosopher calls an insight, the gagster calls a zinger.
The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie — deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Belief in myths allows the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.