When talking about distrust in the mainstream media we have emphasized the extremity of this distrust: conspiracy theories. Examples abound such as disbelieving that the moon landing ever happened, that our government and media is actively hiding aliens, or the fluoride problem. But that’s not all coming out of Pandora’s Box.

Pandora’s Spectrum

As often is the case however, this is not simply a matter of black and white. Pandora’s Box doesn’t only contain strange conspiracy theories, but also more subtle assumptions. There is a whole spectrum of potential misinformation coming out of it. From disagreeing with the referee to assuming free masons rule the world.

This can be about any other partisan issue. Politics, foreign policy, nationalism, religion to even the smallest of disputes, such as those between cyclists and cars. Often, people will more readily believe the information supporting their side of the aisle.

If the mainstream media doesn’t give information to support your view or side, evidence to the contrary is just a search away. How you perform your search very much decides if you’re going to keep that box closed. Specifically looking for information contradicting the mainstream media and in favour of your own view is going at that box with a crowbar (e.g. referee during this match was bribed). You want confirmed of what you already believe is true, so called #ConfirmationBias.

Critical Distrust

On the other hand, if you want second or third opinions to verify what the mainstream media wrote, you might just put an extra lock on that box. (e.g. in-depth analysis of the match), and lets call this #CriticalDistrust.

It’s not easy to stomach facts, figures, stats in opposition of what you so inherently feel is the truth. However, science wouldn’t have gotten where it is now by ignoring what they see, and just blindly assume that their hypothesis is correct.

And remember, whatever side you’re on, it can only grow by acknowledging the facts, and moving forward. If your team lost, and no critical and credible media (mainstream or otherwise) supports your idea (either that he was unfair or bribed) perhaps you might need to support the idea that your team needs another coach. Stubbornly believing that it couldn’t have been your team’s fault is not going to make your team any better.

That is the difference between opening Pandora’s Box, or being critically distrustful.

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