Fake News Horror Show
Fake News Horror Show
Coming June 2018 - New York City

Fake News Horror Show!


Misinformation and computational propaganda are already a problem.

New technologies may make things exponentially worse.

The Fake News Horror Show! will explore worst case scenarios.

New technologies are making it possible to generate new and more insidious forms of propaganda and misinformation. The only way to address the problem is to understand what is possible.

On Thursday June 7th and Friday June 8th, the Fake News Horror Show! will convene researchers, digital media experts and technologists, and those concerned with the political and social implications of computational propaganda to imagine the worst. Picture a science fair of terrifying propaganda tools- some real and some imagined, but all based on plausible technologies.

Join NYC Media Lab at Fake News Horror Show! for 30+ emerging media and technology demonstrations; keynotes and presentations from industry and research experts; hands-on workshops; and a series of panel discussions that explore these themes and more.

"It'll only take a couple of big hoaxes to really convince the public that nothing’s real." - NYC Media Lab's Justin Hendrix in BuzzFeed News

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Thursday, June 7th. 

4:00PM. Doors Open for Demos + Networking. Join us for an hour of 30+ demonstrations of technology prototypes. 

5:00PM. The History of Fake News. Led by Matt Jones, James R. Barker Professor of Contemporary Civilization, where his scholarship focuses on the history of science, technology, computing, and philosophy. He was recently a fellow at Data & Society.

5:30pm. Opening Talk. Led by  JD Maddox consultant to the US State Department, a counterterrorism expert with specialization in emerging technology applications.

6:00pm. A Nightmare for Democracy. Led by David Carroll, faculty member and Director of the MFA Design and Technology program at The New School, whose work on the Cambridge Analytica scandal made national headlines. 

6:30pm. The Fake News Horror Show! Panel Discussion.

With Speakers:

  • Siva Vaidhyanathan, Robertson Professor of Modern Media Studies at the University of Virginia and author of Antisocial Media: How Facebook Disconnects Us and Undermines Democracy
  • Melissa Ryan, Media Matters Visiting Fellow, Founder of the Factual Democracy Project and Editor of the Ctrl Alt-Right Delete newsletter
  • Gentry Lane, CEO, Societas Analytics
  • Brett Horvath, Co-Founder & Head of Strategy at Scout.AI
  • Justin Hendrix, Executive Director, NYC Media Lab

7:00PM. Demo Pitch Introductions! Learn about the demos participating the the event through open mic pitches. 

8:00PM-9:00PM. Demos + Networking Reception. 

Preview: 30+ Demos to participate in Fake News Horror Show!


Friday, June 8th.

8:00AM. Doors Open!

8:30AM. Opening Presentation. Led by Renee DiResta, Director of Research at New Knowledge, and Head of Policy at nonprofit Data for Democracy.

9:00AM-11:00AM. Morning Session: Demos + Workshops. Join us for workshops led by experts from industry and research. The morning session will include four workshop sessions on topics ranging from how ISIS and other extremist groups are weaponizing social media to audio deepfakes. With leaders: Eric Feinberg, GIPEC; David Polinchock, Experiential Advertising Group; Andrew Losowsky, Mozilla; James Grimmelmann, Cornell Tech; Scott Reitherman, Creative Technologist.

11:00AM. Keynote Speaker: Clint Watts, Messing with the Enemy: Surviving in a Social Media World of Hackers, Terrorists, Russians, and Fake News.

12:00PM. Lunch.

12:30PM. Introductory Talk: Angelo Carusone, Media Matters. 

Angelo Carusone, President of Media Matters, offers a new framework for understanding and stopping the fake news problem, recognizing it for the cheating it is and drawing on past examples of deceit that were effectively stomped out by advocates.

12:45PM. Now What? What do we do to rein in the Fake News Horror Show!, hosted by Media Matters: The future may portend a fake news horror show, but in this panel conference participants have the opportunity to hear what they can do to make sure we don’t experience the worst case scenario. Advocates across sectors and movements share their experiences combatting weaponized lies and hate online and why advocacy in this landscape matters.

Speakers include:

  • Melissa Ryan, Media Matters Visiting Fellow and Editor of Ctrl Alt-Right Delete
  • Erin Shields, National Field Organizer, Internet Rights, Center for Media Justice
  • Madihha Ahussain, Special Counsel for Anti-Muslim Bigotry, Muslim Advocates.
  • Roger McNamee, Founder, Elevation Partners

  • Greg Greene, Special Projects Manager, Planned Parenthood Action Fund

1:30-3:30PM. Afternoon Session: Demos + Workshops. Afternoon workshops include topics such as an exploration of the responsibility of marketers to solve online toxicity & misinformation and detecting fake videos. With leaders: Siwei Lyu (University at Albany) & Vishal Misra (Columbia University); Eric Seufert, N3TWORK; Ben Moskowitz & Bobby Richter; and Megan Holmgren, Storyful. 

4:00PM. Event ends. 


NYU Tandon School of Engineering's MAGNET facility. 2 Metrotech Center, Brooklyn NY, 11221. MAGNET is located on the 8th Floor.