For the past few years, reporting on far-right extremism and misinformation has been a messy free-for-all. Sure, there have been some attempts to delineate best practices, and certain approaches to storytelling, such as those that seem to normalize neo-Naziism, have come under harsh criticism. But few rules have guided the new genre of reporting—and, to date, no one has taken a hard look at how that reporting may be complicit in spreading far-right messaging and helping the movement grow.
Until now. A new report titled “The Oxygen of Amplification” offers an unprecedented look at the fundamental paradox of reporting on the so-called “alt-right”: Doing so without amplifying that ideology is extremely difficult, if not downright impossible. The report comes out of the Data & Society research institute’s