Talk:Spin (propaganda)

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Double redirects[edit]

Some more double redirects to fix:

<KF> 18:59, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)


I'm not super in favour of the recent rename from </nowiki>spin (public relations)</nowiki> to </nowiki>spin (propaganda)</nowiki>.

Any person in the western hemisphere with a personal recollection of the historical period between the Russian revolution (1917) and the fall of the Berlin wall (1989) has within their top three PCA bundle on "propaganda" the extremely ominous, heavy, and sharp rhetorical phrase "Soviet propaganda" (and our own implied counter-propaganda).

The propaganda page says that "propaganda" was once neutral.

Well, once upon a time, the word "gay" was not on the amygdala hot list of every person who survived puberty within ten miles of grocery store. The word "gay" at that age effectively means "the bottom of the pecking order has just entered the building".

Attitudes do change, but that's one heck of a long rehabilitation. To paraphrase Max Planck, social morality advances a billion funerals at a time.

Right—we're just using this word in a previously established way.

Here's Hugo Mercier arguing that the entire edifice of human language is build on propaganda more so than reason: The Argumentative Theory (2011).

If one tries hard enough, one can construe "pass me the salt" as propaganda—at the ordinary dinner table, and not just the Salt March.


  • humans existed for a few hundred days, then humans had sex
  • sex existed for a billion years, then sex had humans
  • reason existed for 5000 years, as humans gradually codified spin
  • spin existed for 300,000 years, as humans gradually codified reason

To my mind, the way we understand modern spin originates with the public relations campaigns of Edward Bernays.

Before that, we called ordinary spin "casting events into a positive light", which few people think of as being propaganda, until reminded that propaganda once had a neutral meaning.

"That's interesting. I never knew that. You must be one of those 'happy' gays." — MaxEnt 19:17, 12 June 2017 (UTC)