Not Buying It

By Charlotte Henry

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The post-truth society: how we got here; where is "here", exactly, and what on earth can we do about it?

Publication date: June 2019
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About the book

We are living in the era of “post-truth”. People in this country have had enough of experts, apparently. Instead, we are offered alternative facts, fake news, social media echo chambers, dodgy statistics and outright lies. With a tsunami of information coming at us from every direction, citizen journalism, e-petitions and blogs, we are more politically engaged than ever; but when politicians and the media tell us their truth, we just don’t buy it any more.

How did it come to this? To the chattering classes, recent political events have come as a shock, while the voters wonder: why haven’t they been listening? Politicians and journalists live, work and play together in an insulated London bubble. They went to the same schools. They share the same top jobs. They’re completely out of touch with how the other half lives.

Meanwhile, the internet helps a lie to get halfway around the world while the truth is still putting its boots on. Investigative reporting is in the doldrums, while fake news is spread for free online. But if we are all journalists now, what responsibility do we have to check sources, to educate ourselves, and to pay for news? How do we stay reliably informed in a world where truth is supposedly a thing of the past?

In Not Buying It, Charlotte Henry looks at the facts behind fake news, talking to the major players in politics and media, old and new. She also talks to voters and thinkers from outside the media bubble, to provide context, explanation, and, crucially, solutions. “Post-truth” was the Oxford Dictionary’s word of 2016. This year, let’s start getting the truth back.

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