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The Reality Game

Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781913068127

Price: £16.99

ON SALE: 9th January 2020

Genre: Computing & Information Technology / Digital Lifestyle

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‘A mind-blowing and essential book for a future that’s practically already here. This book scares the hell out of me, but if we listen to Woolley’s wake-up call, then I also have hope.’ Jane McGonigal, author of Reality is Broken

The problem of online disinformation is only getting worse. Social media may well play a role in the US 2020 presidential election and other major political events. But that doesn’t even begin to describe what future propaganda will look like.

As Samuel Woolley shows, we will soon be navigating new technologies such as human-like automated voice systems, machine learning, ‘deep-fake’ AI-edited videos and images, interactive memes, virtual reality and augmented reality. In stories both deeply researched and compellingly written, Woolley describes this future, and explains how the technology can be manipulated, who might control it and its impact on political strategy.

Finally, Woolley proposes strategic responses to this threat with the ultimate goal of empowering activists and pushing technology builders to design for democracy.

We may not be able to alter how the internet was used to challenge democracy in years past but we can follow the signals to prevent manipulation in the future – and to use these powerful new tools not to control people but to empower them.

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While the rest of us have been processing our shock at the fake news crisis, Sam Woolley has been anticipating what's coming next. This a mind-blowing and essential book for a future that's practically already here, whether we know it or not. This book scares the hell out of me, but if we listen to Woolley's wake-up call, then I also have hope.
Jane McGonigal, author of Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World
This is a crucial book for understanding online misinformation, disinformation, and outright propaganda. Like a good doctor, Sam Woolley has given us an excellent diagnosis of this problem and laid out a treatment plan. Now it's up to politicians and the public to heed his timely advice..
Tim O'Reilly, founder and CEO of O'Reilly Media
Long before most of the world had ever heard the terms "disinformation" , "trolls", "bots" or "fake news", Sam Woolley had begun to study these new, destructive forces eroding democracy in the digital age. The Reality Game is a compelling book. Policymakers in Washington, Brussels, and Silicon Valley, as well as all citizens of the world concerned about truth and democracy must read this book.
Michael McFaul, former US Ambassador to Russia and professor at Stanford University