Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Lakoff: The press is Dump's marketing agency

In this Guardian piece Lakoff describes how Dump is framing the debate, and how the press just blithely goes along with it. He provides recommendations for the press to correct their apparently willing collusion with the destruction of democracy. His 4 press tips are below. See the link for much more.

"First, journalists must understand how propaganda works on the brain and grasp the cognitive science that marketers of propaganda have implicitly mastered: frames, metaphors, narratives and brain basics.

"Second, keep a steely focus on the fact that American democracy is under attack by a foreign power, possibly with collusion from the sitting president’s campaign. This is a crisis. Certain rules don’t apply in a crisis, especially the rule that the press must amplify the president’s words, whatever they are.

"Third, stop letting Trump control the news cycle. Newsgathering should be a serious affair controlled by editors whose power rivals any politician’s. Stop chasing his tweets and elevating every sideshow. Start every story with truth and the context of what’s really important to citizens in a democracy. More BBC, less TMZ.

"Fourth, don’t spread lies. Don’t privilege Trump’s lies by putting their specific language in the headlines, the leads or the hashtags. Don’t repeat the lies assuming people will automatically know they’re lies. People need to know the president is lying, but be careful about repeating the lies because 'a lie repeated often enough becomes the truth'. Repetition of lies spreads them."

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