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Is that a fact?

For the second season of Is that a fact?, we’re exploring the origins of false narratives and the harm they cause. We know that sharing misinformation is misleading and leaves people poorly informed, but we wanted to go deeper and explore how fictional information starts and then bubbles to the surface to misdirect the country’s civic and cultural discourse. Listen this season as we explore false narratives related to the country’s most important issues and events, including the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, school shootings, immigration, political parties and more.

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Is that a fact?, NLP’s new podcast, informs listeners about news literacy issues that affect their lives through informative conversations with experts working to combat misinformation.

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Season 2 Episode 7

Sandy Hook at 10: Tragedy, conspiracy theories and justice, part two

This episode of “Is that a Fact?” is part two of a two-part episode marking the 10th anniversary of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on Dec. 14, 2012, when a gunman murdered 20 first graders and six adults.

Season 2 Episode 6

Sandy Hook at 10: Tragedy, conspiracy theories and justice, part one

This episode of “Is that a Fact?” is part one of a two-part episode marking the 10th anniversary of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on Dec. 14, 2012, when a gunman murdered 20 first graders and six adults. Soon after, conspiracy theories calling the massacre a hoax emerged. And they have persisted for a decade, thanks to amplification and profiteering by alt-Right media figure Alex Jones.

Season 2 Episode 5

Are journalists getting the immigration story right?

In this episode, we interview Dr. Reece Jones, chair of the Department of Geography and Environment at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and author of White Borders: The History of Race and Immigration in the United States from Chinese Exclusion to the Border Wall, for an overview of the most enduring false narratives that have shaped our public conversations about immigration.

Season 2 Episode 4

Disinformation and Russia’s War in Ukraine

In this episode we talk to two journalists covering the Russian invasion of Ukraine to help us better understand how disinformation and propaganda are obscuring, or outright contradicting, the facts, both within Russia and beyond its borders.

Season 2 Episode 3

The politicization of the pandemic

In this episode, we set out to explore whether false narratives about the pandemic and the COVID-19 vaccines have overshadowed science or whether science has managed to hold its own, particularly in light of the politicization of the pandemic.

Season 2 Episode 2

Perception or reality: Just how divided is America, really?

In this episode, we set out to explore whether the narrative of the country’s deep political polarization is fiction or reality.

Season 2 Episode 1

How 9/11 truthers planted the seeds for QAnon

For the second season of Is that a fact?, we’re exploring the origins of false narratives and the harm they have caused.

Season 1 Episode 11

Special: Is misinformation to blame for vaccine hesitancy?

In this special episode of “Is that a fact?” we explore why some people remain hesitant to get one of the COVID-19 vaccines, despite growing evidence that inoculation is the key to getting our lives and the economy back on track, and we consider how much misinformation is to blame.

Season 1 Episode 10

How much did misinformation impact the election?

In our season finale, Enrique Acevedo of CBS’ “60 in 6,” Dr. Joan Donovan of the Shorenstein Center and Jane Lytvynenko of BuzzFeed News discuss how misinformation impacted the 2020 elections and what the near future of misinformation might look like.

Season 1 Episode 9

Truth Decay: Why Americans are turning away from facts

In our penultimate episode of the season, we speak to Jennifer Kavanagh, senior political scientist at RAND corporation, who describes a growing phenomenon she and her colleagues call “Truth Decay” and why Americans are rejecting formally trusted institutions.

Season 1 Episode 8

The mainstreaming of conspiracy theories

In this episode, Cindy Otis, a former CIA analyst who is now the vice president for analysis for Alethea Group, where she leads disinformation investigations in the private sector explains why conspiracy theories have become more mainstream, what’s lending them such currency and what we can do to inoculate ourselves against them.

Season 1 Episode 7

Why democracy falters without local news

We speak to Gilbert Bailon, the editor-in-chief of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, about the importance of local news to American democracy and why we all should care about the loss of local newspapers across the country.

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