Trial by Media

Christopher J. Ferguson, PhD Stetson University, DeLand, FL cjfergus@stetson.edu The issue of “trial by media” has come under some recent debate following explosive documentaries which alleged that celebrities Michael Jackson and R. Kelly committed heinous sex crimes against multiple victims. In full transparency, I haven’t seen either documentary, so I won’t comment on them directly.…

Cyber Security: Dealing with Cyber Threats

Ajay Singh, MSc, PG Diploma in Cyber Law & Cyber Forensics Former CEO of a Fintech Company, Mumbai, India ajay_singh@outlook.com Organizations the world over have leveraged information technology and the internet to meet their business objectives and offer better, faster services to their customers and constituents. Increasing dependence on information systems has exposed them to…

Bringing Psychology’s Stories to Life

Alicia C. Aebersold APA Chief Communications Officer Washington, DC aebersold@apa.org At its heart, successful communication is ensuring that great ideas and inspiring messages reach the right people, in the right way, at the right time and spur people into action. Determining that strategy is first and foremost for our communications team at the American Psychological…

The Child Development Center Study of Adopted Identical Twins Reared Apart and My Media Adventures

Lawrence Perlman, PhD Independent Practice Ann Arbor, MI Perlman44@gmail.com Fifty years ago, I worked on a research study of identical twins who had been separated at birth and adopted without the adoptive parents’ knowledge that they were twins. The study was the brainchild of a child psychiatrist named Peter Neubauer who directed the Child Development…

Is Wall-To-Wall News Coverage Hurting Civil Discourse?

Christopher J. Ferguson, PhD Stetson University cjfergus@stetson.edu In the modern news media environment, news consumers are faced with opportunities to experience “wall to wall” news coverage of issues, big and small. Often this coverage is heavy on hyperbole and “talking heads” but short on actual, clear information. Further, the market of news media has so…

The Media Moment

Anita Foeman, PhD (with Bessie Lawton, PhD) West Chester University of Pennsylvania AFoeman@wcupa.edu A little more than a year ago, our Public Relations Director pitched a story to the Washington Post about a project that had been underway for more than a decade at West Chester University. In a time of toxic race relations, my…

Mutual Radicalization: A Danger We Can Overcome

Fathali M. Moghaddam, PhD* Georgetown University moghaddf@georgetown.edu I was in Tehran, Iran, in 1979 when Khomeini’s fanatical followers invaded the American Embassy and took 52 American diplomats as hostages. This illegal invasion was part of a long series of extremist events, which many Americans and Iranians saw as actually starting with the CIA orchestrated coup…

Working With Mainstream Media

Kim I. Mills Senior Communications Advisor, American Psychological Association kmills@apa.org On a trip to Costa Rica a few years ago, Ramani Durvasula, a psychology professor at Cal State, Los Angeles, took her daughters ziplining. While the group was getting set up, Durvasula noticed some people staring at her and then shyly asking if they could…

Institutional Reality Monitoring and the Problem of Fake News

Karen J. Mitchell West Chester University of Pennsylvania, USA kmitchell@wcupa.edu In the Spring/Summer 2017 The Amplifier Magazine, I reviewed how we might leverage what cognitive psychologists know about individual and interpersonal reality monitoring (Johnson, Hashtroudi, & Lindsay, 1993) to better understand how individuals assess the legitimacy of news sources and the veracity of news reports…