This failure of U.S. broadcast media to use proper news judgment in covering Trump is among the gravest professional sins the industry has committed in recent memory because it fails to recognize the manipulation involved.

The point of life is not to put dog ears on yourself and post it online for everyone to see. It’s fun, it’s adorable, but it’s the visual equivalent of masturbating—there’s no point other than immediate gratification.

Jon Hamm | InStyle

The lens through which people understand politics and politicians is extraordinarily powerful. And Trump understands the new ecosystem, in which facts and truth don’t matter. You attract attention, rouse emotions, and then move on. You can surf those emotions. I’ve said it before, but if I watched Fox I wouldn’t vote for me!

[The new media ecosystem] means everything is true and nothing is true. An explanation of climate change from a Nobel Prize-winning physicist looks exactly the same on your Facebook page as the denial of climate change by somebody on the Koch brothers’ payroll. And the capacity to disseminate misinformation, wild conspiracy theories, to paint the opposition in wildly negative light without any rebuttal—that has accelerated in ways that much more sharply polarize the electorate and make it very difficult to have a common conversation.

Maybe intellectuals have always been persecuted and shoved in lockers, but something in my gut tells me we’re at a low point — where social media interaction has replaced genuine debate and political discourse, where politicians are judged by whether we’d want to have a beer with them, where scientific consensus is rejected, where scientific research is underfunded, where journalism is drowning in celebrity gossip.
 
I see Kim Kardashian’s ass at the top of CNN.com, and I am scared.

In that moment, Facebook was Reynolds’ only recourse. And that’s scary. Because no matter how much social media has done to raise public awareness about these tragedies, it still falls so short. Comments and posts and shares and retweets couldn’t come to the rescue when Reynolds and Castile needed it most. And virality alone isn’t admissible in court. As Castile lay dying, he and his family could not rely on anything else. Social media was all they had, and all that social media could offer them was an outlet for outrage, fear, and mourning.

Digital listeners [are those who] browse and absorb social feeds without creating content of their own. ‘Really they’re just sitting there assembling experiences vicariously. When you are bombarded with images from all the people you’ve ever known and people you’ll never meet, the sense of your own experience inevitably becomes more diluted.’