Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Kazakhstan, Nov. 2018
The “Fake News!”: Facts, Information, Disinformation, Misinformation course takes a creative fiction and nonfiction approach to understanding and recognizing information, disinformation, and misinformation. The course explores the elements of information, such as details, particulars, facts, figures, statistics, and data; the differences between primary and secondary sources including those found in traditional media, social media, and new media; the ways in which misinformation and disinformation are used; a history and overview of propaganda; and the roles of mythbusters, debunkers, fact-checkers, and individuals in countering disinformation. Course participants read fact and fiction, including creative nonfiction from writers such as John D’Agata and Angela Pelster-Wiebe, and fiction by George Saunders and Jennifer Egan, among others. Participants also write creative works during the course, including several new media projects involving both text and visualized information in order to understand how these elements work together in a multimedia world.