We Need Gentle Truths for Now

We engage in radical digital media literacy by enjoying a bite of education and a bit of poetry, creating humane responses to fake news and social media in the era of Covid-19.

Each short episode assembles materials made over three related efforts. First, complex and consequential ideas about fake news: “hardtruths.” These were gathered in 2017 for an online primer in digital media literacy, #100hardtruths-#fakenews. There you can find scores of resources about fake news by artists, journalists, activists, scholars, and more. http://scalar.me/100hardtruths.

Next we offer poems that build off of, respond to, or deepen a hardtruth. These were written in 2018 and 2019, at Fake News Poetry Workshops: encounters that address these complex concerns through art, intimacy, technology, and poetry. http://fakenews-poetry.org.

Finally, given both the digital and viral truths wrought by the crisis of COVID-19, and to provide some small relief, we provide resources and methods to deepen connection and possibility during a time of social distancing and via technology.

Each episode offers things to do with others as well as things that were done before and for you. Tender hand-offs of digital things remind us how we can use technologies that distance us physically for better. Making and making use of poetry and related knowledge can create verification engines that rely on belief structures outside the endangering logics of the internet and the fake news propelled therein.

We are people, distanced but maintaining, and we need more than the transmission of messages and data. We want connection, goodness, reason, feeling, and change. In a time when we are more reliant on digital technology than ever, each episode demonstrates methods to take part in digital defiance, without collusion, and with care for our internet things and digital ways.

Join us! Read or respond to a poem or hardtruth found on the two websites above.

Organize your own Fake News Poetry Workshop.

Reach out with questions or content @ 100hardtruths@gmail.com.

Twitter: @100HardTruths

Instagram: #100HardTruths

YouTube: 100 Hard Truths