Author(s): Farhad Manjoo
How truth has been trumped by "truthiness" - a groundbreaking look at the technology and psychology behind the fictions now flooding the news. Comedian Stephen Colbert's catchy neologism captured something essential about our age: that people are now more comfortable with ideas that feel true, even if the evidence for those beliefs is thin. In a subtle and fascinating exploration, Salon writer Farhad Manjoo explains what's powering this phenomenon. He explores how new technologies that give us control over what we see and read have caused "reality" to split across political and cultural lines, allowing opposing groups to subscribe not only to different opinions from one another, but also different facts.With brilliant insights from psychology, sociology, and economics, Manjoo explains how myths pushed by both partisans and marketers-whether about global warming, the war in Iraq, 9/11, or even the virtues of a certain candy bar-have attracted wide support in recent years. His characters include the Swift Boat Veterans, Lou Dobbs, and conspiracy theorists of all varieties, all of whom prove that true matters less, now, than true enough.
"...Manjoo has produced an engaging, illustrative look at the dangers of living in an oversaturated media world." (Publishers Weekly, January 28, 2008)
Farhad Manjoo manages Machinist, a daily technology news blog at Salon.com, where he also writes frequently on journalism, politics, and new media.
Introduction: Why Facts No Longer Matter.1. "Reality" Is Splitting.2. The New Tribalism: Swift Boats and the Power of Choosing.3. Trusting Your Senses: Selective Perception and 9/11.4. Questionable Expertise: The Stolen Election and the Men Who Push It.5. The Twilight of Objectivity, or What's the Matter with Lou Dobbs?6. "Truthiness" Everywhere.Epilogue: Living In a World without Trust.Acknowledgments.Notes.Index.