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The Social Fact


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About the Author

John Wihbey is an Assistant Professor of Journalism and Media Innovation at Northeastern University, where he heads the graduate programs in the School of Journalism.


The book is about the role of journalism in our networked world, how our current information technologies and the networks that form in and through them impact knowledge, as well as what we could do to make the sharing of knowledge healthier and less susceptible to distortion and manipulation. Wihbey does this through giving readers clear and helpful primers on things like network science and artificial intelligence as they relate to the flows of information, all anchored in the history of journalism and network technologies - especially helpful because it shows the questions we face today aren't entirely different from ones that have been asked and answered in the past. I find that reassuring.

-Inside Higher Education

The Social Fact is an intriguing and worthwhile read and Wihbey provides valuable insights, that while primarily for journalists, are germane to the work of news producers, social scientists, or anyone interested in disseminating more valueadded "information" in an environment where social facts coexist with fake news, misinformation, and half-truths.

-Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media

This reviewer knows of no better introduction to the challenges new information technology brings to the study of media and the profession of journalism.


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