The Atlantic on what Facebook did to American democracy

They still can’t believe Hillary lost and have no intention of honestly considering why. From Alexis C. Madrigal at The Atlantic:

Tech journalists covering Facebook had a duty to cover what was happening before, during, and after the election. Reporters tried to see past their often liberal political orientations and the unprecedented actions of Donald Trump to see how 2016 was playing out on the internet. Every component of the chaotic digital campaign has been reported on, here at The Atlantic, and elsewhere: Facebook’s enormous distribution power for political information, rapacious partisanship reinforced by distinct media information spheres, the increasing scourge of “viral” hoaxes and other kinds of misinformation that could propagate through those networks, and the Russian information ops agency.

But no one delivered the synthesis that could have tied together all these disparate threads. It’s not that this hypothetical perfect story would have changed the outcome of the election. The real problem—for all political stripes—is understanding the set of conditions that led to Trump’s victory. The informational underpinnings of democracy have eroded, and no one has explained precisely how. More.

Reality check: No one has explained precisely how? Let me try: Americans realized they actually had a chance to reject the politics of both parties. Many Dems turned to Sanders and many Republicans turned to Trump. There were more Republicans. Next question?

See also: Why rubes don’t trust traditional media any more: Because we can get wrong information anyway without paying for it or putting up with tons of ads.

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