Truth Counts: A Practical Guide for News Consumers

An all-star roster of writers explores ways of finding the truth amid falsehoods, propaganda and nonstop social media.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Truth Matters by Tom Rosenstiel and Katherine K. Ellis
Chapter 2: Finding Our Way by Frank Sesno
Chapter 3: The Weaponizing of Fake News by Bryan Monroe
Chapter 4: The Psychology of Political Polarization and Pessimism by Michael Shermer
Chapter 5: Algorithms-What Drives Our Filter Bubbles? by Joshua Benton
Chapter 6: Beliefs vs. Facts: Getting the Brain to Change Its Mind by Jonas T. Kaplan
Chapter 7: Correcting The Record by Alexios Mantzarlis
Chapter 8: Russian Import or Made In America? by Sarah Oates
Chapter 9: Final Thoughts by Ellen Shearer

Ellen Shearer & Matt Mansfield, editors

What people are saying

“A deep dive into what ‘truth’ really is in this so-called ‘post-truth’ era. An essential read for those determined to preserve and protect the truth for the sake of our national discourse and our democracy.”
Stuart Schwartz, former senior broadcast producer, ABC News

“Truth Counts gives citizens usable frameworks to ferret out truth in today’s maze of misinformation while also grounding them in the history, currency, psychology and algorithms of truth. An informative read.”
Jan Schaffer, ombudsman, Corporation for Public Broadcasting

“This smart examination of news and fakery, public opinion and prejudice could not be more timely. Truth Counts is an indispensable handbook. It offers important counsel on how to understand and counteract an unprecedented threat to the very definition of what constitutes truth in public discourse.
Peter Eisner, award-winning foreign correspondent and author of “MacArthur’s Spies”

“A well done ‘how did we get here and what do we do about it’ guide for journalists.”
Lynn Sweet, Washington Bureau Chief, Chicago Sun-Times

“After the reading this book, you will never watch or read the news the same way again. This incredibly important body of work is both timely and timeless not just for practitioners, but for every news consumer seeking to be a well informed citizen.”
David Chalian, CNN Political Director

“The truth is under assault like never before in history. It’s great news that a group of media experts is making this timely attempt to re-establish a universal sense of what is fact and what is fiction.”
Dana Milbank, columnist, The Washington Post

Everyone needs to know how to separate truth and facts from everything else. We hope this book will guide you.

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