Contenu du cours / Course content
The classical printmedia, newspapers and magazines, is threatened in its existence, replaced by gigantic communications platforms like “facebook”, serving two billion users worldwide. The end of classical newspapers could endanger, at least weaken, democracy. Neither the owners of the social media, nor governments, have clear answers of how to answer the growing extremism in cyberspace, including manipulated elections. Populist movements, racists, or a demagogue, are using the almost, total absence of control, to spread invented, or twisted information, and declaring any justified critic as “fake news”. The course will deal with the desperate attempt of printmedia /publishers to survive the challenge of the internet, and the ruthless exploitation of the net freedom by extreme elements, which, as on facebook, are allowed to deny the holocaust and declare mass murders in US schools as inventions, a “hoax”, and students who survived and speak out against violence are insulted as “paid actors”.
Objectifs du cours / Course objectives
The students, most likely more attached to the internet, cell phones and computers to follow the daily news, will be offered an understanding of classical journalism in democratic societies. “Freedom of speech”, or/ and “freedom of the press”, principles which are part of our concept of free societies, will be compared with authoritarian systems, which are intervening in media work with censorship and repression. The dangers of total freedom on the net will be put in competition with the more classical, slower, elitist approach of traditional publishers. We will try to define what good reliable journalism is and why our often chaotic societies need information, which is, independent and not intended to manipulate readers. Finally, we will approach digital news with caution, question its value.