The truth is more nuanced. Cook is seeking a technological solution, something that scales, against what he sees as a human problem. Passing along lies may be “your prerogative” but it is the medium’s responsibility to slow the spread of lies and take action against persistent liars.
This is a hard truth the Internet industry is just waking up to, in the Age of Trump.
CrossCheck, a system for flagging fake news in France, which holds a Presidential election this spring, is Version 1 of the emerging solution. It’s important to note, however, that it’s just Version 1. Leading companies must undertake an open source process before a real solution can be implemented.
The big difference between our era in American history and those that came before is that the industry which dominates our economy also created the dominant medium. Most Americans now get their news through social media, through Web sites that deny categorically they are even media companies.
The result is a media landscape that can easily be gamed. Russia gamed it. Donald Trump is the result.