Media, Democracy, and Parasites? Oh My!

We're all reeling from this election, but the media is particularly dazed and confused. What just happened? Fake news? Bots? What's going on??? Marina Gorbis, the Director of the Institute for the Future, a noted think tank in Palo Alto, convened an emergency session on media and democracy to discuss it. She invited me to bring an evolutionary perspective to the proceedings. My Hermione Granger moment! This is one of my special areas of interest - parasites!!! All superorganisms are plagued by parasites, because the collective value these societies maintain are so juicy and concentrated. How can a parasite resist? Human societies are no different - plenty of opportunity for clever parasites to latch onto. Here is the audio recording of my musings on the mechanics of deception and mimicry, the vulnerability of our nascent digital "mycelial" networks to parasitic invasion, and ways to think about evading it.