YouTube: https://youtube.com/watch?v=JuR8jGnZV2U
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Duration:03:52
Uploaded:2019-06-21
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TOUR DETAILS: https://www.hankgreen.com/events

Once I started thinking about this video, I saw more of these lies at every turn. They're common in political speech, and insidious in their usefulness. Often, once you click on the headline or watch the video, you even find out that you had taken the wrong message from the headline. And then, in that case, you feel like it's your fault that you misunderstood...but let me tell you, no one things as much about headlines and titles as the people who write them. They know /exactly/ what they're doing.

And you might think, "But if it's explained in the article...no one got hurt, right?" Except that the vast majority of people who see a headline do not read the article...the headline IS CONTENT and needs to be treated that way.

The innocuous headlie is REALLY common on YouTube. Video titles like, "We need to talk..." or "I'm done with this!" create the lie that a big deal is happening, which makes you click...and find out that, like, their swimming pool has a leak. Like, I've done that, and I feel less bad about it when the lie someone might walk away with isn't about, like, global warming or the future of America.

I just think we need more precise language than "clickbait" because sometimes, clickbait isn't bad...and there are lots of different ways clickbait works. The headlie is only one of them.


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Good morning, John!

So, lies.  They've always been around; there was once a woman who convinced the entire medical establishment of Britain that she was giving birth to rabbits.  One of the  great tricks I see these days is something I call a "head lie," where I will tell you a true fact, but when that true information hits your brain, it becomes a lie.  It's sneaky, it's tricky, and we're really getting good at it.  I call it a head lie because it only becomes a lie when it hits your head, and also because it often happens inside of headlines.  So you're gonna want some examples to understand what is happening here; here are three that I saw this very week, lies that were put into my brain by true statements.

(0:39)
Number one: U.S Birth Rates Plummeting!  First, it seems to be indicating that something bad is happening.  I'm not entirely sure what it is, I guess that it like- we're gonna go extinct as a species or as Americans or something.  But first, it's not really plummeting.  It's decreasing a little bit, but more importantly, the birth rate for people over 25 has actually been pretty steadily and substantially increasing, so what's going on here?  The head lie I've been told is that something bad is happening, the reality is that fewer teenagers are having babies.  But we don't wanna write a headline about that, cuz no one cares about good news!

(1:17)
Moving on to number two: Tesla's safety stats.  Head lies do not have to be headlines.  Tesla releases "safety reports" every quarter.  They are extremely limited, here's  the most recent one.  And in it we see that there's one accident for every 2.87 million autopilot miles driven and one accident for every 1.76 million non-autopilot miles driven.  These are true things, the lie that has been put into my head is that autopilot is preventing crashes.  Is it?  I don't know!  Because Tesla's autopilot is mostly used on highways, and crashes per mile are much lower on highways.  So it this the effect of the autopilot or the effect of, like, the autopilot is just on in situations where crashes are less likely?  And I'm not saying that autopilot doesn't prevent crashes, I bet it does to some extent.  What I am saying is that every car company should be legally required to compile and release safety data, especially in regard to autonomous driving and it's really worrying that governments do not require them to do that when car crashes are one of the most significant public health threats in the world!

(2:13)
Number three:  Carnival Cruises release ten times more pollution than all of the cars in Europe combined!  I'm not saying that we shouldn't be paying attention to the pollution caused by the shipping industry generally, cruise lines specifically, but this has kind of obviously created a lie in your head without being technically incorrect.  There are many different types of pollution, one of them is sulfur dioxide, which basically isn't produced by cars anymore at all, especially in Europe where they've done a really good job of removing sulfur from fuels.  So yes, Carnival Cruise Lines does release more sulfur dioxide than all of the cars in Europe because all of the cars in Europe. fore the most part, don't release any sulfur dioxide.

Look, I do want us to burn cleaner fuel in cruise ships, and I think that ultimately safety features like Tesla's autopilot-thogh it should not be called that-will save a lot of lives.  But I also think that there isn't really that much of a difference between giving people information that makes them think an untrue thing and just telling them an untrue thing.  And if you provide information to people, if that's part of your job, you have an obligation to not lie to them.

An here's a truth for you: I'm going to be doing a quick tour to celebrate the release of the paperback version of "An Absolutely Remarkable Thing" and for everyone who can't come to that tour I'm showing you this very cute deer that was in my neighbor's yard.  The first night on July 30th I'm doing a bunch of fun weirdness at the Stateside Theater in Austin with Bernie Burns of Rooster Teeth and that event will be livestreamed to Theaters all over the place.  Look at all these places.  And then I'll be in Houston on the next night, I'll be signing and saying hi to everybody who wants to do that after the events.  I'ts gonna be fun, I'm gonna share, I think, a little bit of my next book.  There's more information in the description and, John, I'll see you on Tuesday.