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Is that a fact?

In the first 10-episode season of our podcast Is that a fact?, we explore the question of how American democracy can survive the onslaught of misinformation that has infected our political discourse. Host Darragh Worland explores how a toxic information environment is threatening multiple pillars of American democracy through conversations with leading American thinkers, journalists, foreign policy experts, and authors. Together, they seek to help listeners understand how they can become part of the solution to the growing infodemic.

NEW! Catch our special episode “Is misinformation to blame for vaccine hesitancy?”

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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 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.

Season 1 Episode 6

Who are journalism's new gatekeepers?

Rebecca Aguilar, a multiple Emmy award-winning reporter who recently became the first Latina president-elect of the Society of Professional Journalists, talks about how the gatekeeping role of journalists has been altered by the internet and social media, what’s been lost, but also what’s been gained.

Season 1 Episode 5

Here's what we know about Russia's disinformation campaigns

Deen Freelon, associate professor at the Hussman School of Journalism and Media at UNC, Chapel Hill talks about how foreign adversaries, and particularly the Internet Research Agency in Russia, are using social media platforms against us.

Season 1 Episode 4

Kara Swisher on why Facebook is a threat to democracy

In this episode, our guest is Kara Swisher, one of the premiere tech columnists in the country, who talked about how social media platforms have affected our ability to talk to one another.

Season 1 Episode 3

Can journalism survive an authoritarian ruler?

In this episode, we speak to Filipina journalist Maria Ressa about the rise of misinformation, the role of tech in misinformation and her battles with President Duterte.

Season 1 Episode 2

How can the press serve our fractured country?

In this episode, we speak to Michael Luo, editor of the newyorker.com, about a piece he wrote on The Hutchins Commission which was formed during World War II to decide how the press could serve democracy during a period of intense political strife and distrust in the media.

Season 1 Episode 1

Can democracy survive the rise of misinformation?

In our premiere episode of this first season of our podcast, we talk to Dartmouth government professor Brendan Nyhan about the state of American democracy today.

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