What do Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, YouTube, and Donald Trump have in common? They have the most popular twitter profiles in all the tweetosphere. They’ve got the most followers, active tweets, retweeted tweets and so on. But what is most important about these accounts are what they’re really doing. Influencing.
Influence is a VERY powerful tool. So much so that people that have these very influential accounts typically have up to a team to monitor and consider the posts prior to them being tweeted. There’s no doubt that Taylor didn’t sell more tickets to her concerts in record time or that people didn’t watch Justin Bieber’s Carpool Karaoke skit because it was tweeted to his millions of followers. But what happens when you put a tool that causes so much influence into the hands of an extremist? Well we’re starting to find out.
Donald Trump is no stranger to sharing his thoughts and feelings on Twitter. He has attacked individuals and major corporations for having a different of opinion.
One of his latest victims of Trump’s cyber attack is the New York Times. The Times is highly regarded and of the most respected news outlets in our country and guess what else? They’re also considered very influential.
The New York Times predicted that Donald Trump would lose the Republican primaries as well as the general election (if he made it that far). Although he proved them both wrong, Freedom of press is our first amendment right. So I ask, is it fair that our President attacks media outlets such as the New York Times calling them “Fake News”. Such highly regarded media outlets that we rely on to provide us with what they consider to be news?
If you remember anything from this blog remember the word influence. The power that someone or something can have over another. We’re talking about the leader of the free world compromising the integrity of one of the countries most trusted news and media outlets.
I would guess that more than half of the people reading this blog get more than half of their news through social media like Facebook or Twitter. In these forums everyone’s got a voice. And although why that might be great, how do we know these sources are credible?
It took me less than thirty seconds to create the images you see in my blog, all compliments to www.faketrumptweet.com. A website that specializes in creating tweets that look like their from our President but were simply created by anyone with the ability to write and read.
Keeping in mind that so much of our news is consumed through social media outlets now, it’s not crazy to think that people are creating these fake tweets, posting them on social media, and influencing others who believe them to be real tweets from President Donald Trump.
Millennials growing up with all of this information so readily available are the ones that need to really think about the source of the information we’re reading. We’ve grown into a generation that wants to absorb as much information in the shortest amount of time but don’t spend the time to find out where that information originally came from.
This conflict that President Trump has created between social media as a news outlet and our traditional news outlets is going to create a huge problem. Trump has the ability to not answer questions by outlets he deems as “Fake” and can choose not to provide certain information to those outlets but to other outlets he feels are more important.
This dangerous dictatorship-like approach to informing the American people is only getting more dangerous. Trusted news sources in question and social media dominating where we’re getting our news from. Is this just an evolution of technology or evolution in democracy as we know it?