FREE PRESS AND FAKE NEWS

Hearing Room 1  |  12:30pm–1:45pm

“Burke said there were Three Estates in Parliament; but, in the Reporters’ Gallery yonder, there sat a Fourth Estate more important far than they all.” 175 years after Thomas Carlyle praised the role of the press, a scourge of “fake news” threatens the Fourth Estate. What is fake news? How do different people define it, and where does it come from? Why did it become such a phenomenon in the past year? Finally, does it pose a mortal threat to our democracy—and if so, what can we do about it? Five journalists discuss these crucial questions.

ROGER HODGE is deputy editor of The Intercept, an online news magazine devoted to investigative journalism. Hodge's writings have appeared in many publications, including Texas Monthly, the London Review of Books, Popular Science, the New Republic, and Harper's.

CLARA JEFFERY is the editor-in-chief of Mother Jones, which was just named "Magazine of the Year" by the American Society of Magazine Editors. During Jeffery's tenure, Mother Jones has won National Magazine Awards for general excellence, reporting, and video; redesigned its website; and established bureaus in Washington and New York.

SARAH LEONARD is a senior editor at The Nation and co-editor of The Future We Want: Radical Ideas for a New Century. She is a contributing editor to Dissent and The New Inquiry.

NICK MILLER is editor of the East Bay Express and the former co-editor of the Sacramento News & Review.

BEN TARNOFF (moderator) is a founding editor of Logic, a new magazine about technology. He writes about technology and politics for The Guardian and Jacobin.