“Forget the press, read the internet,” Trump told a group of supporters in Colorado Springs this afternoon.
“Forget the press, read the internet, study other things, don’t go for the mainstream media. Most of them, good news, fortunately, most of them won’t be around very much longer in my opinion.” It’s a threat that accidentally reveals the promise of online media. The future of journalism is online, baby.
Yes, Trump wants to annihilate the press for publishing the accounts of his accusers. But moreover, he misunderstands what the press is and how the internet defines the news cycle. Because the press is a major component of the internet, and the two become more blurred every day.
Yesterday, the conservative media, including Drudge and Rush Limbaugh, picked up an obvious joke made by a California-based comedian named Raandy—“i love working at the post office in Columbus, Ohio and ripping up absentee ballots that vote for trump”—as proof of voter fraud. The story went viral enough where the USPS “investigated” it. The Ohio secretary of state even got involved. Is this what Donald Trump means when he says, “Forget the press, read the internet”?
“This is an election about truth,” Trump also told the crowd. Oh boy, is he right about that. The internet and social media—systems not designed to separate fact from fiction—have virtually erased the line between fact and opinion. Anything can be spun, and it can be spun infinitely, the internet teaches us.
Trump continued, “You’re not going to get it [truth] from the dishonest media.” (Not if they—Rush Limbaugh, for example, who has 13.25 million listeners—treat Raandy’s tweets as news, that’s for sure.)
“Some people can’t handle the truth,” Trump said. Which is precisely why he wants you to “forget the press, read the internet.”
Watch the full speech below:
[H/T Jim Dalrymple]