Information Bankruptcy: A Provocative Title or a Sad Finding?


The need to rethink all existing models in society leads us not only to intellectual exhaustion but also to a serious split among the people. From retro moods in the style of #wantmylifeback, #backtobasics and #vintageretro to bold predictions of how we already live in the future of the hybrid reality. Like a wooden fever in all this turbulent flow, a question constantly comes up "What is reality?" And "Which reality?" And sometimes even "Whose reality?"

How did we get here? Quite naturally, step by step, I'm afraid. You remember "If you don't change the direction you're going, you'll get where you're heading," right?

Since 2015, in the Edelman Trust Barometer, trust (truth) has been present in every title of the report. Coincidence? Certainly not. And the pandemic only brought out for the mass of people in an impossible-to-look-aside-visibility "the bankruptcy of the information."

Business is the institution that enjoys the most trust (confidence index 61, with an increase of 2 percentage points in 2021 compared to 2020). The need for in-depth analysis of the ever-changing situation, but even more so the need for quick reactions - every day you struggle to survive or for higher profits - have determined its high efficiency in a crisis. And that was appreciated.

But even more touching was the willingness of this same business, which is often "spit on" to pursue profit in everything - to protect and help. And as for the profit - sure, that's why it exists. And it would be naive to imagine that business and altruism are the same. Without these profits, none of the good deeds companies do not only for their people but for the whole community, would be possible. Development programs, donations, sponsorship and support in all conceivable and inconceivable forms. Not just during a pandemic, but constantly. "For better or for worse," as they say.

For this reason, it is high time we started calling things by their real names. And companies as well. Because just as people are different, so are the organisations. That's why they have names and brands - so we can distinguish them. And for everyone to be able to understand and judge who they would like to be close with.

The media is also adding 2 percentage points to its confidence index (51) according to the Edelman Trust Barometer 2021. The difficult path they are taking will, in my view, lead to a faster transformation of the already stacked financing model. The vicious understanding of freely available information without restriction that rules after the opening and mass "settlement" of the Internet could not be a sustainable development basis.

The other global issue is the continuing rise of the organisations' own communication channels. Employers' media already have the highest index of trust in terms of the reliability of the communication - 61 points, followed by the national administrations with 58 and media materials with a named source (57). Information from large corporations ranks fourth with 48 points - just before paid advertising content (46). The last place is given to social media with 35 points.

Will this lead to the "absorption" of the media from the business and the seizure of functions such as information and entertainment? And what will happen in this scenario with the fourth power? This authority, which, by putting pressure on both the government and this same business, should defend and act in the public interest and not for purely lobbying purposes?

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