If the currency of business is money (ask President Trump), then the currency of education, or, more accurately academia, is truth. Academic (truth) was always the counterweight for business (money), holding us in the end to a moral/ethical standard. But what today constitutes truth? It's a slippery slope at best these days. 

I still recall a time before computers first appeared! Couple that with the sheer magnitude and ease of access of the Internet, and I also recall the first academic papers that incorporated internet-based information. At first, it wasn't a big concern: There was no process for correctly citing internet-based information and thereby incorporating it into academic works. "Digital" information, sources and references simply weren't allowed ("they aren't peer reviewed and public proved" I recall my colleagues vehemently arguing). That is until the "standards" changed and MLA and APA began publishing basic "rules" for posting, citing and listing online-based information as well as their sources. Add to that the awkwardness of "online" classes, and soon most of my English 101 and 102 colleagues were, by deference, accepting essays and papers in which most if not all the citation/references were from internet sources. Hey, nowadays there's even rules for citing fiction movie information!

Academicians knew that much of the information on the internet was "soft" at best, it's "truth value" often judged based on frequency the information and, in many cases, the rumor, was posted on the internet, but it took modern socio-political propaganda machines to figure out how to cleverly and purposefully post enticing misinformation that would surely be "picked up" by social media visitors and reposted in sufficient numbers for the misinformation to be regarded as "true;" remember, by this time, it could also be cited, listed, and thereby validated simply by formatting the source or reference using MLA and APA. From there it was a small leap to allowing incorporation of "true by repetition and citation" social information alongside misinformation into academic (and journalistic) publications, thereby entirely redefining "truth." After all, what one hears and reads as "news" nowadays on television, on the internet, in newspapers and "self-published" books can be sourced in a way that makes it look academic and therefore "true." What's even more disconcerting is that such information, indirectly cited in subsequent academic-appearing content is typically regarded as true and re-quoteable. 

So who, if anyone, knows what's true anymore? The internet and thereby academia have been successfully repurposed (some would say cuckolded) into a mass communication system that can be rather easily manipulated to purposefully create misinformation and even influence democratic elections! If that weren't enough, add outright psychological cyber-warfare. 

And so I once again ask the question many my-age educators continue to ask: Is there anything at all "true" anymore? #truth #internet #cyber-warfare #propaganda