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CSUB Kegley Institute of Ethics Presents 13th Annual Fall Lecture, “Fake News and the Threat to Democracy”

The term ‘fake news’ made many headlines during the 2016 presidential election. However, variations of it have been around for years, including tabloid stories about three-headed babies and alien invasions, and of course, everyone’s fascination with celebrities.

The Kegley Institute of Ethics at California State University, Bakersfield will address the issue of fake news during its 13th annual Fall Lecture at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 21, in the Doré Theater with a talk from Edward Wasserman, Ph.D, Dean and professor of the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley).

The lecture, titled, “Fake News and the Threat to Democracy,” will explore the difference between fake and real news, the gray area in-between, and learning how to critically engage all information sources.

“Quality journalism is the lynchpin of democracy,” said Christopher Meyers, retiring director of the Kegley Institute. “It is vital to providing key information on everything from the goings-on in Washington to where to view an eclipse. Dr. Wasserman will teach us how to distinguish the real from the fake and encourage us to reject purveyors of the latter.” 

Wasserman has devoted a journalistic and academic career to getting reporting right and teaching others how to do so. During his 25-year career in journalism, Wasserman worked as a reporter, editor and CEO at news organizations in Maryland, Wyoming, Florida and New York.

For a decade, starting in 2003, Wasserman held the Knight Foundation chair in journalism ethics at Washington and Lee University in Virginia, where he taught courses in professional ethics, media ownership and control, and coverage of poverty in news and popular culture. His academic writings have focused on conflict of interest, confidentiality, plagiarism and source protection. He lectures widely on matters of media policy and practice, and has spoken to professional and academic groups throughout the U.S. and internationally. Wasserman has degrees from Yale and the University of Paris, and received his Ph.D. from the London School of Economics. His website, Unsocial Media, can be found at:

Like all KIE events, this lecture is free and open to the public, thanks to the generous support from TBC Media, Chevron, Kern Schools Federal Credit Union and a partnership between Kaiser Permanente and Adventist Health Bakersfield.  Free parking is also available in Lots, A, B and C after 6 p.m. For additional information, please call (661) 654-2555.

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