The Podcast And A Revolution Of Truth
For a long, long time, humanity has been informationally stunted.
For decades, most of our information came through the television, newspapers and the radio. News organisations presented everything we knew about the outside world to us and we accepted what they told us. Hugely complicated issues were condensed into 5 minute segments squished between commercial breaks.
The brutal truth about the mainstream media is that a small number of corporations controlled all of the information we were able to see. They were the bottleneck through which all of the information about the world came to us.
These corporations chose which news stories were highlighted and which were kept in the dark. They chose what we focused on and what we didn’t focus on. They chose which political candidates were able to have their voices heard. They chose how stories were framed. They chose how the public thought about particular people. For decades, they had an overwhelming influence over the minds of the public in most developed countries.
In the old informational environment, the average person was clueless and helpless. When talking about the world outside their personal sphere, they might have started their sentence with “I heard something about that on the news”, or “I like that political candidate X, he said he would spend more money on schools”
The average person had absolutely no idea just how little they knew about the complexities of the world. Only the minority who put in the effort to read books on particular subjects would have any idea about the truth of any particular issue.
We were owned and operated by corporations and other powerful people for decades. But the information landscape has changed, and we have a shining light of hope that has the ability to lead to a wiser, more enlightened human race: The Podcast.
The Power Of The Podcast And Long-Form Content
Bernie Saunders ran to be the Democratic nominee in both 2016 and 2020. He advocated for free, universal healthcare for all Americans. This would mean an enormous drop in profits for the pharmaceutical industry in America. So, of course, the mainstream media, (which is controlled by big business) produced a smear campaign against Bernie.
Whenever you find an individual repeatedly being given negative labels by the media, you know a smear campaign is underway. The public fell for the smear campaign of Bernie (as they usually do), and millions of people had their opinions of Bernie Saunders decided for them.
But while the elites may control all of the mainstream media, they don’t control The Joe Rogan Podcast. And all it took was a single hour long podcast with an unbiased interviewer without an agenda to change the minds of thousands across the internet.
Bernie Saunders appeared on the Joe Rogan Podcast 1 hour and 7 minutes, and spoke about his ideas in detail.
Most of the comments underneath the video carried a similar sentiment:
The mainstream media has the ability to create a false impression about any individual they choose. And because most people are media illiterate, they’re not able to see a smear campaign in action. All it took was a single hour of uninterrupted speech in a podcast for many people to entirely change their minds about Bernie Saunders.
Then another strain of comments began to appear:
These comments show that people are finally beginning to realise just how much mainstream media has been manipulating public opinion for the last few decades.
When we hear political candidates speak in TV debates, they’re given 1–2 minutes to try and explain incredibly complex issues like healthcare or economic policy, which is of course completely impossible.
When politics is discussed in soundbites, it becomes a media game. A game to sound good in a short space of time. A game to make the other person look stupid. A game to say the right thing that will sound the best when put as a 30 second clip on the evening news. In the mainstream media, no real political policy is discussed, and the audience is left with nothing more than a few “zingers” they can gleefully repeat to their friends.
Of course, it’s this way by design. When politicians are only given 1–2 minutes to talk, what they say can be more easily controlled. The choice of questions asked to politicians are also controlled by the media corporations, which ensures that no alternative ideas are ever discussed. The mainstream media is able to choose where our attention goes and where it doesn’t go by controlling the framework of the debate.
But now we have the podcast and long-form content, and these allow far greater and deeper understanding into topics. You are able to hear real nuance in an issue rather than only basic points and “zingers”. You are able to hear people thinking out loud, rather than only hearing the end of their thinking process. You able to understand the depth and minute details of the issue, and crucially, you are able to hear the opposing side of the argument in-detail rather than a strawman argument.
Some issues desperately need long-form content. America can’t ever hope to have a debate about gun ownership when the discussion format is two people shouting over each other on fox news for 5 minutes before being interrupted by a commercial break. We can’t hope to have any real understanding of what the military is doing in other countries when all discussions of the topic happen through a mainstream news channel that wants you to think a certain way about it.
Posers, sociopaths and manipulators thrive on short-form content and sound bites because it allows them to hide their true character. People who tell the truth, genuine people who truly believe in what they’re saying thrive on long-form content because it allows their true character to naturally unfold.
“When the lies get big enough, the whole world spoils.” Jordan Peterson
What would Hilary Clinton sound like in 2 hour podcast? How would Joe Biden answer unconventional questions asked by a host that had no agenda? How would Donald Trump come across when asked to describe his political policies in detail?
We’ve never seen these important political figures sit down and talk for 2 hours. Not once. And as such, we have no idea who they actually are and what they believe. We can only guess and speculate on whether they’re telling the truth, pretending or making calculated responses based on upholding their personal image.
On the other hand, we know who Bernie Saunders, Andrew Yang and Tulsie Gabbard are because they’ve all appeared on The Joe Rogan Podcast and spoken at length on their policies and ideas. When you see someone sit down and speak for a lengthy period of time, it becomes impossible for them to hide who they are. When people sit down and talk for a long period of time, it gradually becomes clear who they are and what they stand for.
Human beings can understand each other when they sit down, face to face, and talk for long periods of time. We can see the truth in their eyes, their body language and their tone of voice. This is how we communicated in our tribal environment for hundreds of thousands of years.
It’s the synthetic filters of media that allow lies to be spread amongst populations.
Would America have gone to war in Iraq if the population had been able to listen to George W Bush explaining his reasoning on a 2 hour podcast? Would homosexuals have been discriminated against for decades if the public had access to long-form podcasts of homosexuals telling us about their suffering? Could entire societies have been racist for hundreds of years if they had access to lengthy podcasts from those of other races speaking their truth? Would the German population have turned against the Jews in Nazi Germany if they’d had access to long-form podcasts of real Jews explaining themselves?
The truth keeps evil at bay. While the mainstream media is the perfect medium for evil-doers, liars and psychopaths to manipulate the public and carefully craft their image, the podcast is the perfect medium for truth-tellers and people of good-will. The podcast and long-form content have the ability to spread truth and change the world for the better.
“It is deceit that produces the terrible suffering of mankind: the death camps of the Nazis; the torture chambers and genocides of Stalin and that even greater monster, Mao. It was deceit that killed hundreds of millions of people in the twentieth century. It was deceit that almost doomed civilization itself. It is deceit that still threatens us, most profoundly, today” — Jordan Peterson
An Undiscovered Market
There are University lectures, debates and podcasts on serious issues throughout Youtube. Many of which have view counts into the tens of millions.
Why are people watching these long-form educational videos? Wasn’t the general public supposed to be stupid and uneducated?
Nobody knew that the market for long-form educational content existed, yet it was there all along.
Traditional media organisations would often justify their low quality, soundbite, shallow content by saying something along the lines of “we’re giving the public what they want”. What they didn’t realise was that instead of giving the public the type of content they wanted, they were actually shaping audience tastes. To a large extent, the public watched shallow mainstream content simply because that’s what was provided to them.
“Everybody came to assume that the media forms actually reflected our capacity for attention and depth. They didn’t. They narrowed it.” — Jordan Peterson
If you ask a mainstream media watcher a question about why they voted for Hilary Clinton in the 2016 election, they would probably tell you something along the lines of “Because Donald Trump is a scumbag”, or perhaps, “Because I think we should put a woman in the white house”.
Basic answers, with no real understanding of politics behind them.
On the other hand, if you ask a podcast listener the same question, they would likely have a far more sophisticated answer. Something like: “Hilary Clinton has plenty of flaws. She was for the Iraq war in 2003, and often supports military interventions in other countries. But I also believe that Donald Trump could be a threat to American democracy and stability due to his blatant disregard for facts and truth, so I decided that Hilary was the lesser of two evils”.
Whether you agree or disagree with the opinion given here, there’s no denying that it’s far more nuanced and demonstrates a much greater depth of understanding of politics.
This is the difference between someone who consumes long-form content and someone who consumes mainstream media.
To put it simply, for decades the mainstream media has been keeping people dumb. But the podcast and long-form content has the ability to create a smarter, wiser and more enlightened population.
An Antidote To Hit-Pieces
Jordan Peterson the right-wing nut. Jordan Peterson the sexist. Jordan Peterson the grifter. Jordan Peterson the transphobe. Jordan Peterson the fraud.
Endless numbers of hit-pieces have been written about Jordan Peterson. Certainly, these hit-pieces have an effect on his reputation, after all, search “Jordan Peterson” into Google and the first result is likely to be a hit-piece.
However, we live in a world with podcasts and long-form content. Jordan Peterson has endless hours of lectures on Youtube, and appears on hundreds of podcasts. He speaks in great detail about what he believes and what he does not. If somebody wants to find out who Jordan Peterson is, they don’t need to listen to a journalist tell them what to think about him, they can simply go and find the original source material online.
Journalists who write hit-pieces seem ridiculous when the lies and misrepresentations they write can be immediately be fact-checked by watching a couple of Youtube videos.
For decades, the mainstream media has had the power to destroy the reputation of anybody they like. This power has been weakened greatly by podcasts and long-form content.
The Return Of The Spoken Word
For most of human history, we communicated with the spoken word. We sat together around campfires and told our stories to each other. Even in a ancient Greece, the famous philosopher Socrates would refuse to write anything down as he believed the spoken word was superior.
The truth is, a lot of people don’t like to read. A large number of people find reading boring, tiresome and difficult to stick at for longer than 20 minutes. On the other hand, people are much more able listen for long periods of time.
Podcasts and long-form content are a media revolution. The spoken word now has the same reach as the written word, and the spoken word, in it’s digital form, now lasts forever just as any text does. This is unprecedented in human history.
The spoken word has advantages that the written word doesn’t. We can hear the emotion in the speaker’s vocal tonality. We are able to really feel the message a speaker is trying to put out in a way that isn’t possible with the written word. Also, listening is far less work for our brain, and we can consume podcasts while we do other things: washing the dishes, driving the car etc.
Podcasts and long-form content mean that a huge number of people who don’t read now have access to highly intellectual and nuanced information. People are getting smarter. And smarter is exactly what humanity needs to become if it’s going to survive.
(At least, those who listen to podcasts and long-form content are getting smarter, while those who continue to only consume mainstream news will be left behind).
Intellectuals are already becoming more popular. Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson have already held live events drawing crowds of thousands of people. These intellectuals are treated almost like rock-stars; people want their autograph, people scream as they walk on stage, people line up to speak with them for a few minutes. And this is all because of podcasts and long-form content.
In our information rich environment, it’s important and necessary that humanity gets collectively smarter. And the podcast and long-form content are the ideal tool to achieve this goal.
Podcasts and long-form content are changing the world.
Originally published at https://www.mediavsreality.com on February 20, 2021.