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Telling fact from fiction in the information age

caption: Information Trust panel participants at Town Hall Seattle
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Information Trust panel participants at Town Hall Seattle
KUOW Photo/Jennie Cecil Moore

Maybe the fictional Col. Nathan R. Jessep (a.k.a. Jack Nicholson) was right when he said “You can’t handle the truth!” Or maybe it’s just hard to know truth from falsehood these days.

More than ever, a wealth of information is at our fingertips. But can we trust it? That question affects our shared sense of fact vs. fiction, and the basis of our democracy.

A panel organized by the University of Washington’s Center for an Informed Public and the UW Communication Leadership Program addressed this issue at Town Hall Seattle on January 23. KUOW’s Jennie Cecil Moore recorded the event.

Participants included moderator Hanson Hosein, co-director, UW Communication Leadership program; Ryan Calo, UW School of Law associate professor; Chris Coward, UW Information School senior principal research scientist and director; Emma Spiro, UW Information School assistant professor; Kate Starbird, UW Human Centered Design & Engineering associate professor; and Jevin West, UW Information School associate professor. KUOW’s general manager Caryn Mathes gave introductory remarks.

Why you can trust KUOW