Let’s call 2016 the year of “fake news“, when scandalous, entertaining algorithm-based headlines helped usher in one of the biggest political upsets of all time in the US Presidential election.  Coverage was driven by candidates’ sensationalized commentary, but missed capturing the real temperature across half of America.  As The New York Times’ Jim Rutenberg wrote, “the news media by and large missed what was happening all around it, and it was the story of a lifetime.” Media became somewhat of a manipulation game that discouraged us from understanding the crux of the real news.

Online, aggregated viewpoints bombarded us on a personalized internet and rarely did we encounter a scenario that we have to disagree with.  People were sick of the establishment, and forced themselves to be heard.

Investment investigator Gordon Dee Smith forecasted on Real Vision TV how the hyper-connectivity communication revolution can mean major consequences for the world of politics and business. Disparate rebels with an agenda can quickly form tribal affinity groups and emerge without warning, potentially taking down companies and governments, changing policy, shaping or even destroying careers, or bankrupting a company.  We’ve witnessed it firsthand.

But this general populist backlash that we’re seeing now isn’t new. It was born out of the 2008 financial crisis.  Many are still coming out of that debt burden and harbor a sense of deep resentment and suspicion.  Wall Street knew what was taking place then, but like today, the media didn’t paint a full picture for everyone.  As a result people lost their homes, their jobs and their life savings.

Nearly 10 years later, even after such a catastrophe and with more platforms for information delivery, finance is still treated like a backroom club or entertainment.  The focus remains on headlines and groupthink when it should stand for so much more than that.