Michael Moore, filmmaker

"You Must Become The Media: Stop complaining about the media, stop wishing they were something they’re not, find the ones who are doing a good job and then start your own “media empire” by sharing their work and your work on the internet. Use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and other social media sites to spread news and information."

John Oliver

"We all need to commit to defending the reality of facts." 

World Economic Forum

One of the biggest threats facing the world moving into 2013 is that of “digital wildfire”, where misinformation spread over the Internet leads to real-world danger. That’s according to Swiss non-profit the World Economic Forum, which released its Global Risks 2013 report today. After interviewing 1,000 industry leaders and risk experts, the spread of false information across the Web ranks alongside economic failures, environmental dangers, disease and others as the top global threats of today.

President Barack Obama

The new media ecosystem “means everything is true and nothing is true. An explanation of climate change from a Nobel Prize-winning physicist looks exactly the same on your Facebook page as the denial of climate change by somebody on the Koch brothers’ payroll. And the capacity to disseminate misinformation, wild conspiracy theories, to paint the opposition in wildly negative light without any rebuttal—that has accelerated in ways that much more sharply polarize the electorate and make it very difficult to have a common conversation.”

Masha Gessen, journalist

“Lying is the message, It’s not just that both Putin and President Trump lie, it is that they lie in the same way and for the same purpose: blatantly, to assert power over truth itself.”

Brooke Binkowski, Snopes managing editor

“It used to be that if you got too far from the mainstream, you were shunned for being a little nutty, Now there is so much nutty going around that it’s socially acceptable to embrace wild accusations. No one is embarrassed by anything anymore.” 

Robert Mercer, Guardian journalist

"But then there’s increasing evidence that our public arenas – the social media sites where we post our holiday snaps or make comments about the news – are a new battlefield where international geopolitics is playing out in real time. It’s a new age of propaganda. But whose? This week, Russia announced the formation of a new branch of the military: 'information warfare troops'."

"Sam Woolley of the Oxford Internet Institute’s computational propaganda institute tells me that one third of all traffic on Twitter before the EU referendum was automated “bots” – accounts that are programmed to look like people, to act like people, and to change the conversation, to make topics trend. And they were all for Leave. Before the US election, they were five-to-one in favour of Trump – many of them Russian. Last week they have been in action in the Stoke byelection – Russian bots, organised by who? – attacking Paul Nuttall."

"You can take an existing trending topic, such as fake news, and then weaponise it. You can turn it against the very media that uncovered it. Viewed in a certain light, fake news is a suicide bomb at the heart of our information system. Strapped to the live body of us – the mainstream media."

Steven Levy, Editor of Backchannel

It’s no surprise that the front lines on the assault on truth have turned out to be the previously unvetted stream of the Facebook News Feed. Fake news isn’t Mark Zuckerberg’s fault, but it is his problem; as the world’s most popular arena for news, Facebook can’t stand by and let itself become the instrument that allows big lies and propaganda to trample reason and fact.

George Orwell, writer

"Nazi theory indeed specifically denies that such a thing as “the truth” exists. There is, for instance, no such thing as “Science”. There is only “German Science,” “Jewish Science,” etc. The implied objective of this line of thought is a nightmare world in which the Leader, or some ruling clique, controls not only the future but the past. If the Leader says of such and such an event, “It never happened” — well, it never happened. If he says that two and two are five — well two and two are five."