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Dealing with a Post-Truth World: A Starter List for Independent Media

Dealing with a Post-Truth World: A Starter List for Independent Media
For a variety of reasons I haven’t posted any serious thoughts in the past few months but there’s been plenty to talk about.
2017 was a tough year psychologically. I think I speak for many people, not just me, but there was a serious mental exercise that took place trying to keep up with the news and remain sane about it. The bombardment of information is challenging in both quantity and quality. From the mass shootings to the natural disasters destroying so many lives and livelihoods, there's been a lot of human suffering to endure. And of course, to state the obvious, it’s bad alone just having to witness it, can’t imagine actually LIVING through it. Hence why we must always be humble and grateful for what we have.
At the same time, it’s very hard to keep up with everything going on with Trump and the world at large, combined with the fact that everything is “fake news” or some kind of “biased opinion”. No matter what you say, there’s always a counter argument, often leaving us without confidence on what is true. How do we deal with this? I’m sure some of you have tuned out to the news cycle as a way to deal with it, as I did somewhat over the past few months (though Love Knowledge doesn’t let me fully tune out, both a blessing and a curse). However, I don’t think that’s the best strategy, at least not in the long run. Everything in moderation, including negative news that makes us sad/angry/frustrated/etc, but still, we cannot deal with problems if we choose to ignore them. We cannot rely on others to fix things for us, we all need to do our part.
Truth is a difficult thing to obtain. It always has been but it feels like now more than ever. I think the first practical step towards dealing with the issue of living in a “post-truth” world is to establish quality sources of information. This is a complicated topic that I’ve been meaning to write about it for some time but my over-simplified answer for now is to seek a variety of news sources with an emphasis on independent media. It is not to say that corporate media like the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal cannot do good journalism, but it is to say that independent media will often give you a better perspective on what’s really going on in the world. At least that has been my observation. Ideally, one would review both corporate and independent press and get as much information as possible but for practical time constraints, that's probably not possible. I myself have chosen to focus on independent sources. I will address all this in more detail in a future essay.
I'm sure for some the idea of independent media is suspect. Are these just blogs on the internet? No. If not, aren't they just citing 'official' sources like the NY Times, Reuters, etc in their reporting anyway? Yes and no. Sometimes they cite the "mainstream" media sources, other times they offer original reporting. Again, it's not to say that the NY Times cannot report on real atrocities and highlight injustices in society, but is that their main mission? Do they highlight stories of government corruption of the US (regardless of the party in power), for instance, or mainly focus on the crimes of other countries? If we want honest reporting of US crimes, should we go to US mainstream media? This objection is frequently lodged at RT (formerly Russia Today), a Russian state-sponsored media outlet. Should we trust their reporting of Russian politics? Probably not at face value, but if that's the case, why isn't the same true for US media? The answer is, it is. Therefore we must be skeptical and question everything. Independent media, generally speaking, has little to no corporate or government funding (hence, there is a lot less outside influence on their reporting, if any). But it's hard to make blanket statements and over-generalize about any media outlets in particular or in general. The point is more about trust. Independent media outlets cover issues like the military-industrial complex and the US imperial empire, and question 'official' government narratives, let alone much more taboo topics like election fraud (not voter fraud) or false flag operations. Anyone that is willing to discuss these topics, which are real, gains a lot more trust than those who systematically ignore, ridicule, or suppress such information. There is a lot more to be said about the differences of 'mainstream' vs. independent media but as mentioned above, I will address this in more detail in a future essay.
Love Knowledge has attempted to curate from some of these independent media outlets but there are many others to get to and more analysis needed. The problem is simply time and resources so I welcome anyone’s help and ideas. The short-term goal (with our small team and budget), has always been to identify then curate from the best sources. Eventually we want to offer original content as well but for now I think focusing on identifying and promoting these top independent sources is valuable enough, given our current situation. There are other goals as well, which I’ll get into later, but for now I’m only focusing on identifying quality sources of information and I welcome your feedback towards identifying them.
The list below is certainly not definitive but here are some of my favorite sources for news and analysis. Please add any independent media/authors/journals/magazines/etc I left off in the comments below. If they're not already on my full list of sources they will get added and eventually analyzed. Thanks in advance for the help.
• AlterNet
• Antiwar.com
• Black Agenda Report
• Center for Investigative Reporting
• Center for Media and Democracy
• CommonDreams
• Consortiumnews.com
• Counter Current News
• CounterPunch
• Democracy Now!
• Dissident Voice
• Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
• FactCheck.org
• Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting
• Food & Water Watch
• Futurism
• GIJN - Global Investigative Journalism Network
• Global Research (Centre for Research on Globalization)
• Global Voices
• In These Times
• Independent Voter
• InsideClimate News
• Institute for Policy Studies
• Institute for Public Accuracy
• Investigative Reporting Workshop
• KPFA Radio
• Media Roots
• Mint Press News
• Mother Jones
• Naked Capitalism
• NationofChange
• OilPrice.com
• opednews.com
• PolitiFact
• Pew Research Center
• Popular Resistance
• Post Carbon Institute
• Press For Truth
• Project Censored
• ProPublica
• Ralph Nader Radio Hour
• Salon
• Shadowproof
• Slate.com
• The Anti-Media
• The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
• The Center for Public Integrity
• The Conversation
• The Corbett Report
• The Empire Files
• The Indypendent
• The Intercept
• The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists
• The Nation Magazine
• The Progressive Magazine
• The Progressive Radio Network
• The Free Thought Project
• TomDispatch
• Truthdig
• Truthout
• The Real News Network
• Washington's Blog
• Zmagazine
• Znet
• WhoWhatWhy
• YES! Magazine
There's a lot more to say and more big picture strategy I want to discuss but this post is long enough as is. Stay tuned for more…
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