Media, Misinformation, and the Protection of Democracy

THE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS OF THE CAPE COD AREA

ANNOUNCES UPCOMING EVENT SPONSORED BY THE DR. FLORENCE SELDIN “DEMOCRACY IS NOT A SPECTATOR SPORT” SPEAKER SERIES

MEDIA, MISINFORMATION, AND THE PROTECTION OF DEMOCRACY

OCTOBER 14, 2023
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM

KNIGHT AUDITORIUM AT BARNSTABLE HIGH SCHOOL
744 WEST MAIN STREET, HYANNIS, MA 02601

As we approach the 2024 federal elections, what is the impact of misinformation and
disinformation on our democratic processes? Is it difficult to discuss issues because the accuracy of
information is in dispute? Do we read/listen to news to confirm our existing opinions? Our
speakers for this program will discuss how misinformation is spread and what we as consumers of
news can do to protect ourselves from it and ensure that we ourselves are not disseminating it.
Too often, misinformation divides people into polarized camps and casts aspersions on groups
differentiated by race, religion, ethnic origin, LGBTQ identity, political identity, or disability. These
divisions create impediments to effective dialogue and consensus building necessary for the
functioning of democracy.

Our presenters will identify:

  • available resources and tools to help participants understand the differences between
    accurate news and misinformation;
  • the challenges that the development of AI tools present to voter decision making;
  • potential safety measures, laws and policies that government/news media could take to address these challenges.
  • The importance of sustaining local news

Presenters:
Dr. Joan Donovan, Assistant Professor of Journalism and Emerging Media Studies at Boston
University’s College of Communications and Past Director of the Technology and Social Change
Project at the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy
School of Government.

Dan Kennedy, Professor of Journalism at Northeastern University, nationally known media
commentator, and familiar face as a frequent past panelist on Beat The Press on WGBH TV.
See his website, https://whatworks.news focusing with Ellen Clegg on local news.