Our nation is only as good as the level of information and education consumed by its citizens. Think about it. Input delivers output. Dumb, misinformed, or untrained thinkers will only yield garbage. Smart, informed, and savvy people will produce a more prosperous country. So, what our nation reads, listens to, or watches will dictate what kind of world we will live in. That said, I’m concerned as to who controls the content that we are fed.
Authors, to a degree, play a role in what our citizens think, know, feel, discuss, or do. But what really moves us, on a daily basis, is social media. Then, traditional news media. In fact, they go together.
A Pew Research Center survey shows that 36% of Americans regularly get their news from Facebook. Whatever they see on Facebook will contribute to shaping their impression of life, and this will influence what they share, do, or say — which will impact what others share, say, or do.
23% regularly get news from YouTube, 15% from Twitter, and 11% from Instagram. That’s a lot of people who learn about the world through a handful of filters and aggregators. How skewed are these social media platforms? The editors of these searches dictate what gets seen. Of the stuff that makes it through censors, where is it sourced from? By the time it gets to a consumer, the world’s elite information peddlers have determined what you digest — and thus, shape our world.
Maybe just as important as what’s being seen and shared is how educated and open-minded people are. If we lack the capacity or will to analyze and judge what we’re fed, we lose our ability to initiate and shape our reality. We move from being thinkers and leaders to dumbed-down robots who merely follow the cattle to the slaughterhouse.
So how do we combat the numbing of the American mind?
- Consume more content, not less. Diversify sources, mediums, and subjects.
- Look for confirmation of facts from reliable sources.
- Beware of opinion masked as fact.
- Ask what you aren’t being told and what wasn’t featured. Seek to know what you don’t even know exists. Assume there’s more out there.
- Don’t seek out to find confirmation of one truth — or for evidence the other side is wrong. Just seek it. Know what is what. No bias, no assumptions, no agendas. There should not even be sides. There is truth and all else is a shading, distorting, or silencing of that truth.
- Share your views with others. Hopefully they can correct and contradict you on the falsehoods or be there to agree and support you when you discovered the truth and facts.
- Follow the money, politics, or faith of who says what. They may be disproportionately influenced or limited by these huge things.
- Look for boundaries. An employee may be constrained as to what they can say publicly. A company will speak only to what will make them money. A politician is limited by his or her desire and ability to get re-elected. See what I’m saying? People can’t speak the truth because it will cost them something – money, a job, customers, friends, etc. They are bound by legal documents, fear, threat, ignorance, and other factors.
It simply is quite hard to know what’s real, correct, or good. We only get snapshots of manicured truths, filtered by layers of factors and sources.
Every human suffers from some degree of weakness, insecurity, judgment errors, emotional issues, skeletons in the closet, mental challenges, and physical handicaps. Good luck in getting the truth out from that. If the truth gets out, would we even know what to do with it?
There is a battle for America’s mind. Big institutions want to capture your soul — the government, big business, religion, entertainment, and non-profits. They put out hundreds of billions of dollars of propaganda to serve their own purposes. Their advertising, social media content, events, public statements, products, services, and branding are all geared to get you to continue paying, donating, and investing. It’s a machine that grows in stature, that requires more and more of your help. Truth gives way to something else, a kind of alternate, idealized reality.
No institution is one thing. It is always at least:
- An organism seeking survival. It needs money. Constantly.
- An organization of multiple people, each with selfish, competing interests that also need money.
- An entity that seeks to keep up a public image that will resonate with enough people who will pay enough to sustain its existence.
A bankruptcy of an organization merely means that it lost its ability to foster and project a financially viable truth. Call it an error of marketing. The business didn’t just have products that no one needed or didn’t work. No, no. It simply failed to push out a new truth effectively, one that had to counter the shortcomings of its products and services.
Your book and your marketing of it contributes to the matrix of interpreted truths that get spun, filtered, shared, and misperceived. We can’t help not be a part of the tornado of information and spin that permeates, dominates, and even overwhelms our existence.
The battle for the American mind is being waged every second of the day, with every piece of content that’s posted, shared, forwarded, and discussed. What does it all mean?
It doesn’t matter. It’s what we say or believe it is that makes it so
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Brian Feinblum, the founder of this award-winning blog, can be reached at [email protected] He is available to help authors promote their story, sell their book, and grow their brand. He has 30 years of experience in helping thousands of authors in all genres.
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About Brian Feinblum
Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2021. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent. This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by WinningWriters.com as a “best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America. For more information, please consult: .