Our speaker this month will be Glenn W. Smith. Glenn W. Smith, a longtime journalist, consultant, and think-tank thinker, is currently holding seminars with journalists around the country on the power of framing in politics, especially framing in communications regarding the environment. The author of The Politics of Deceit, Smith now writes for the Austin American-Statesman and the Quorum Report. He used to write regularly for the Huffington Post (in its original incarnation!), and his work has appeared in the Texas Observer and other publications.

Smith was a senior fellow at cognitive scientist George Lakoff’s Rockridge Institute in Berkeley. He co-authored several papers with Lakoff on the power of framing in what passes for our political “conversation.” With that background, Smith has been helping journalists better understand framing — that language can often carry meanings or unseen propaganda.

During these seminars, Smith encountered a new threatening trend in journalism: publishers and editors, in their efforts to attract eyeballs, are editing copy based upon analytics. In other words, framing is being turned over to machines. Human judgment be damned. It’s not that editors and publishers haven’t always favored popular terminology. Still, good writers and editors use their judgment to avoid passing along propaganda without filter. But, do algorithms care?


Join us for the discussion from 7:00PM-9:00PM, followed by drinks and camaraderie from 9:00PM-10:00PM at Firehouse Lounge (605 Brazos St).

Capital Factory is located at 701 Brazos Street, on the 16th floor of the Omni Hotel. Once on the 16th floor, there should be a sign at the front desk directing you to our meetup. If there is no sign, and no one is on duty at the desk, we are usually in the room to the left of the front desk.

Talk will be livestreamed at https://www.youtube.com/user/austintechlive

Parking for the Omni Garage can be validated at the Capital Factory front desk, reducing the cost from $16 to $5. Details: https://capitalfactory.com/parking/