Confronting Disinformation: Views from the Trenches

Microphones on a table for a discussion panel

Panel Discussion

Confronting Disinformation: Views from the Trenches

Moderated by Keith Brown
Director, The Melikian Center: Russian, Eurasian and East European Studies
Professor, School of Politics and Global Studies
Arizona State University

Trust in the U.S. media has never been lower: in a recent Gallup poll, 33% of respondents —1 in 3 — said they had "no trust at all" in mass media. Some politicians go further, and actively intimidate professional journalists trying to do their job. Arizona journalist Caroline Shumway, for example, recently reported that an Arizona senate candidate threatened "to file a complaint for harassment, if any more reporters asked her about her use of QAnon hashtags." In this panel discussion, journalists with experience both in the U.S. and abroad offer their reflections on the challenges they have faced in recent years as social media has provided fertile ground for conspiracy theories, political polarization and disinformation campaigns. What do U.S. citizens need to understand about the future of journalism and mass communications?

Event Details

Thursday, November 12, 2020

12–1:15 p.m. MST

Virtual Zoom Meeting 

Meeting login details will be sent via email prior to the event.

Cost: Free 


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Dr. B. William Silcock
Assistant Dean, Humphrey Program Curator, Associate Professor at the Walter Cronkite School of
Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University

B. William Silcock is an associate professor at the Cronkite School and a leading global innovator in journalism education. He also is the curator of the U.S. State Department’s Hubert H. Humphrey Fulbright Fellowship program at ASU and the director of Cronkite Global Initiatives, where he fosters faculty exchanges and manages study abroad programs. A journalism scholar with more than 25 peer reviewed academic articles, Silcock was twice selected as a Fulbright Scholar (Ireland, 1992, Sweden, 1997).

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Lauren Gambino
Senior Political Reporter, Guardian News and Media
ASU, Cronkite and Fulbright Alumna

Lauren Gambino is senior political reporter at Guardian News and Media in Washington DC, where she covers national politics and the 2020 presidential campaign. She previously covered Hillary Clinton’s campaign during the 2016 presidential election. Her first journalism job was a statehouse reporter for the Associated Press in Salem, Oregon. She is a graduate of Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and the recipient of a 2012 Fulbright scholarship to the UK.

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Holger Roonemaa
Former Hubert H. Humphrey Fellow, based in Tallin, Estonia

Holger Roonemaa runs an investigative team at Ekspress Meedia, a media company which operates several newspapers and the online news site Delfi. He has also been extensively covering the growing interests of China in the region. Holger has been a finalist for Estonian journalism awards multiple times, including the Bonnier Award for investigative journalism, and is also regional editor for the Baltics of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project.

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Noreen Shams
Former Humphrey Fellow, freelance journalist in Pakistan

Noreen Shams is a Multimedia journalist from Pakistan. Been working in Pakistani media since past ten years in traditional and online media. Recently, completed Fulbright-Humphrey Fellowship at Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University, and also took a professional Journalism course at the University of Westminster, London as a Chevening fellow in 2016. Nowadays, she is working to establish MOJO news agency in Pakistan to highlight issues like politics, culture and social media trends. Her work has focused on her country’s political situations and has since covered three Pakistani General Elections. She served as a political commentator for different TV channels.

In Cooperation With

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Phoenix Committee on Foreign Relations - PCFR