Skip to Content

StraightTalk: Media and Politics in a Post-Truth Era

Media and Politics in a Post-Truth Era

Presented in partnership with Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Furman

Thursdays: August 24, 31 and September 7, 2017

In the digital era, spreading made-up news and propaganda is easy—and often profitable. Why is it that false stories are shared so frequently and believed by so many of us? What does this say about the future of real journalism, fact-based news and how the public understands the country's politics and policies?

For three Thursday evenings in August and September, the Riley Institute and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute examined the rise of fake news and propaganda with the annual StraightTalk series.  

Media and Politics in a Post-Truth Era was sold out with crowds ranging from 600 – 1,800 people each week. Sessions explored why we are so easily duped, how false stories impact politics and real news, and what we can do to fight back against the constant barrage of misinformation.

To view all biographies, click here.

The series was moderated by Danielle Vinson, Ph.D.(bio) Furman professor of political science.

August 24, 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm: The Rise of Fake News: How, Why, and What’s at Stake

Fake News and Filter Bubbles: Who is shaping public opinion?

Jason Tanz(bio) site director, WIRED

Understanding Today’s News Ecosystem

Jonathan Albright, PhD(bio) research director, Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University

What’s at Stake: The future of journalism and our democracy

Michael Oreskes(bio) senior vice president of News and editorial director, NPR

August 31, 5:30 pm - 7 pm: Alternative Facts and Partisan Media: Missing Walter Cronkite

Keynote: One Anchor’s View of the 2016 Presidential Election and the Role of Fake News 

Chuck Todd(bio) moderator of “Meet the Press” and NBC News political director

Panel Discussion: Politicians and Media in an Era of Alternative Facts

Katrice Hardy(bio) executive editor, The Greenville News, and SE regional editor, USA Today Network

Bob Inglis, (bio) former member of U.S. House of Representatives, S.C.’s 4th district

Chuck Todd

September 7, 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm: Winning the Information War: Where do we go from here?

Do Facts Still Matter?

Alexios Mantzarlis(bio) director, International Fact-Checking Network, Poynter Institute

Awakening Young Americans to the Role of Honest Media

Erika Hobbs(bio) communications director and Chicago program manager, News Literacy Project

The Role of Journalists in Restoring our Trust

Charles Bierbauer(bio) professor, University of South Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communications, and former veteran political correspondent 

Panel Discussion moderated by Danielle Vinson

Charles Bierbauer

Erika Hobbs

Alexios Mantzarlis

Nigel Robertson(bio) anchor and reporter, WYFF News 4


News coverage:

The Greenville News“Chuck Todd:  ‘Fake news’ claims driven by fear,” by Paul Hyde. 
The Greenville News“Chuck Todd headlines Furman series on media, politics and fake news,” by Paul Hyde. 
WYFF News 4 (pdf) or click on this link. NBC’s Chuck Todd participated in Furman series:  Media and Politics in a Post-Truth Era
Furman University. Chuck Todd Discusses ‘Media and Politics in a Post-Truth Era’, by Tina Underwood. 
Furman PaladinBig Name Media Experts Demystify Fake News at CLP

The Summer Series is presented by The Riley Institute at Furman
and Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Furman