Gaming the Media: The Craft of Fake News, Alt Media, and Epistemological Activism
The concepts of “post-truth” and “fake news” have surfaced as the key terms of 2016. Yet these categories represent a rich ecology of new media techne that have existed within social platforms for several years now. In 2013, Zeynep Tufekci introduced the power of microcelebrities to drive online activism. One year later, GamerGate would arrive to introduce the capacity for these microcelebrities via Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, and message boards to shape knowledge-making practices as a direct counter to established news sites--and as a means of attacking the credibility of establishment and “real news” knowledge work (Mortensen, 2016). Our panelists take a deep look at the craft that informs this type of activism and knowledge work, both as networked activity and a new, rising techne. The panelists then explain how the these activities connect to the craft of the Alt Right and other “post-truth” agents.