Sep 11 2020

COMM Colloquium: Samuel Woolley, Assistant Professor, University of Texas at Austin

September 11, 2020

12:30 PM - 2:00 PM


1169 BSB


Chicago, IL 60612



Title: The International Struggle with Digital Disinformation: Problems and Solutions in the Face of Computational Propaganda

Abstract: Online disinformation stormed the U.S. political process in 2016 and has only worsened since. Yet as Samuel Woolley shows in his new book The Reality Game, this phenomena has deep roots in  earlier international cases of political misuse of social media systems. As we struggle to respond to the problems at hand, Woolley argues that we most also focus on the manipulation of public opinion through emergent technology: humanlike automated voice systems, “deepfake” videos , virtual reality, and more. Woolley describes the profound impact these technologies are beginning to have on our lives with an eye towards how each new invention built without regard for its consequences edges us further into digital authoritarianism. In response, Woolleyargues for a new culture of innovation–one built around accountability and transparency, human rights and democracy.


Erica Mann

Date posted

Apr 16, 2020

Date updated

Apr 16, 2020


Samuel Woolley | Assistant Professor | School of Journalism, Moody College of Communication, University of Texas at Austin