Online to IRL: How Social Drives Real-life Events

Mar 16, 2021

10:15am – 11:00am CT

Jan. 6 was an inflection point in American democracy. We saw online conspiracies and disinfo come to life and violently collide with reality at the Capitol. More than ever, online conspiracies drive offline action, and vice versa. We know social media provides powerful organizing and amplifying tools that can be weaponized —at the expense of democracy. Regulators and industry have hesitated to step in, leaving it to researchers and journalists to reveal the scope of the problem and expose the groups behind the conspiracy theories. Panelists from NBC News and Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy will share their experiences in the trenches and tackle the big questions around our relationship to social media and the obligation of regulators and industry to act.

Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.

Ben Collins

NBC News

Joan Donovan

Shorenstein Center On Media, Politics, And Public Policy At The Harvard Kennedy School

John Sands

John S. And James L. Knight Foundation

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