February 26, 2017
“The films presented here make propositions or ‘escape routes’ from exhausted classical documentary forms … The overall aim is a gradual construction of an alternative history—a history that has at times been blocked, repressed, censored or hijacked … the films selected ask and often answer the complex question of how political resistance can be articulated in forms that are not only appositely representative of resistance but also embody that shape-shifting in their own diverse historical moments and contradictions.” Sherry Millner and Ernest Larsen
Watching Program 1 of Disruptive Film at a screening at Anthology Film Archives, I was taken by how the featured filmmakers, spanning fifty years of resistance to police violence around the globe, used a variety of representational practices to counter an easy, tit-for-tat retreat to revealing “real” “hard truths” in the face of either unseen or misrepresented state-sanctioned violence. This is to say that familiar realist practices employed to expose brutal truths that have been covered up through state-sanctioned censorship, deception, manipulation and repression may reveal said truths, but not the more complex, insidious systems of seeing, saying, and knowing that produce and cement the logic of violence that produces and authorizes the brutality in the first place. Filmmaking, as difficult and unfamiliar as this may be, that challenges viewers to contemplate how media (and state) “truth” is made, who owns it, how it circulates, how it pleases us, how it becomes familiar, and how to disrupt it by using other systems of seeing, showing, and knowing, may be a most necessary strategy of resistance in these, just as in other times.
See More Escape Experimental Routes:
- F is for Phony: Fake Documentary and Truths Undoing, edited by Jesse Lerner and Alexandra Juhasz
- Avant-Doc: Intersections of Documentary and Avant-Garde Cinema, Scott MacDonald
- “Redefining the Documentary: Experimental Forms Explore New Territory,” Mark Johnstone
- “The Last Word: To unite filmmakers and film critics,” Ernest Larsen and Sherry Millner, 1979
- #100hardtruths-#fakenews: a primer on digital media literacy
February 25, 2017
“Let me reiterate: White House is blacklisting outlets for printing the truth. This is chilling. Our bill of rights isn’t up for debate.” @RepBarbaraLee
“This is an undemocratic path that the administration is traveling … There is nothing to be gained from the White House restricting the public’s access to information.” Marty Baron, Executive Editor, Washington Post
The Bill of Rights
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
See More Rights and Wrongs:
February 24, 2017
“Addressing so-called fake news is going to require a lot more than labeling. It’s going to require a cultural change about how we make sense of information, whom we trust, and how we understand our own role in grappling with information. Quick and easy solutions may make the controversy go away, but they won’t address the underlying problems. What is Truth?”
“The path forward is hazy. We need to enable people to hear different perspectives and make sense of a very complicated — and in many ways, overwhelming — information landscape. We cannot fall back on standard educational approaches because the societal context has shifted. We also cannot simply assume that information intermediaries can fix the problem for us, whether they be traditional news media or social media. We need to get creative and build the social infrastructure necessary for people to meaningfully and substantively engage across existing structural lines”
For More Sense-making:
February 21, 2017
In “20th Century Fox Gives Real Apology for a Fake News Campaign,” the chief executive of the public relations company Edelman engages in revealing doublespeak. He reflects upon the use of fake news in the industry, as well as in the recent, scandalous ad campaign for the movie A Cure for Wellness, for which 2oth Century Fox created fake health news from a fake newspaper (Salt Lake City Guardian): “It’s a very kind of perverse use of a genre that is really counterproductive.”
Advertising and public relations—unlike the news or the governments that they pretend to report on in this campaign—have little to no obligation to truth-telling, fact-checking, well-being, or democracy for that matter. Their commitments are to their clients. All press is good press for products (and people as products) and the corporations that peddle them. Perverse manipulations of facts are the productive, counterproductive, and reproductive terrain on which the ad and public relations businesses—and the internet built on their revenues—thrive. The ad business, and the internet it and we produce by both clicking on ads and turning ourselves into advertisements that sell us to bidders for our attentions, is not and has never been an industry organized around keeping people well, nor has it pretended to be.elaborates on the deliberate, definitive, if potentially dangerous obfuscations of this 2oth Century Fox advertising ploy built from, as have been so many ads before it, a definitively “perverse” admixture of real and fake news:
An archived version of the [fake] vaccination article shows that it included real tweets posted by Mr. Trump in the past drawing a link between vaccines and autism. (The links is not supported by scientific evidence.)
- Bourdieu and the Journalistic Field, edited by Rodney Benson, Erik Neveu
- #100hardtruths-#fakenews: a primer on digital media literacy