Trust Me, I’m Lying Book Summary - Trust Me, I’m Lying Book explained in key points
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Trust Me, I’m Lying summary

Ryan Holiday

Confessions of a Media Manipulator

4.1 (122 ratings)
15 mins

Brief summary

Trust Me, I’m Lying by Ryan Holiday unveils the inner workings of the modern media and how it's manipulated, exposing the flaws in the current online advertising model and the danger of misinformation. It's an eye-opening read for anyone who consumes media.

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    Trust Me, I’m Lying
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    Blogs get content from other blogs, meaning that even trivial stories can get passed along to respected news sites.

    In today’s internet-dominated society, most people get their news online. These online news sources, or blogs, are the newspaper of the twenty-first century.

    And just like newspapers, blogs are always looking for fresh stories. These days, that means they watch what spreads across social-media sites like Twitter and what is written on smaller blogs.

    If a story generates enough buzz across these media, chances are it will be picked up by mid-level blogs, which bring it to an even wider audience. And if the buzz continues from there, the story may make its way to major news outlets like the New York Times or CNN, as they also keep an eye on blogs for promising stories.

    A perfect example of this is when American football quarterback Kurt Warner jokingly suggested that a quarterback from a rival team, Brett Favre, join the reality TV show Dancing With The Stars.

    The humorous, yet erroneous, story debuted on a small entertainment blog with the title “Brett Favre is Kurt Warner’s Pick for DWTS: ‘Controversy is good for ratings’.” But then the story was picked up by a CNN-affiliate which ran it with the headline: “Brett Favre’s Next Step?”

    When it finally reached national news publication USA Today, the joke had transformed into a fully fledged rumor: “Brett Favre joining ‘DWTS’ Season 12 Cast?”

    The stories aren’t always this petty, though. Smaller blogs and social media have broken major stories as well.

    Surprisingly, the death of Osama Bin Laden was first reported by a user on Twitter. This was before major news outlets, blogs or even President Obama confirmed its factuality.

    Regardless, both examples show one thing: all blogs are interdependent, so it’s no surprise that even trivial stories can become national headlines.

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    What is Trust Me, I’m Lying about?

    Trust Me, I’m Lying (2012) is an in-depth exposé of today’s news culture, which is primarily channeled through online media sites called blogs. By detailing his experiences with multimillion-dollar public relations campaigns, the author takes us behind the scenes of today’s most popular and influential blogs to paint an unsettling picture of why we shouldn’t believe everything that is labeled as news.

    Trust Me, I’m Lying Review

    Trust Me, I'm Lying (2012) by Ryan Holiday is an eye-opening exposé on the dark side of the digital media landscape. Here's why this book is a must-read:

    • It offers a behind-the-scenes look at the manipulation tactics used in the media, shedding light on the fragile truth behind news headlines.
    • With its real-life examples and engaging storytelling, it brings to life the consequences of click-driven journalism and highlights the importance of critical thinking.
    • The book challenges conventional wisdom and demands readers to question the credibility of information in the digital age, making it an essential read for media-savvy individuals.

    Best quote from Trust Me, I’m Lying

    Every decision a publisher makes is ruled by one dictum: traffic by any means.

    —Ryan Holiday
    example alt text

    Who should read Trust Me, I’m Lying?

    • Anyone interested in learning how blogs and other online news media work
    • Anyone who wants to know why we should question what we read online
    • Anyone looking to understand how blogs are affecting society

    About the Author

    Ryan Holiday is a media strategist best known for his campaigns with New York Times bestselling authors Tucker Max and Robert Greene. He currently works as Director of Marketing for the $550-million clothing company American Apparel, and runs the marketing company Brass Check Marketing.

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    Trust Me, I’m Lying FAQs 

    What is the main message of Trust Me, I’m Lying?

    Trust Me, I’m Lying explores the manipulative tricks and destructive impact of modern media.

    How long does it take to read Trust Me, I’m Lying?

    The reading time for Trust Me, I’m Lying varies, but the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Trust Me, I’m Lying a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Trust Me, I’m Lying is worth reading for its eye-opening insights into the flaws of modern media.

    Who is the author of Trust Me, I’m Lying?

    The author of Trust Me, I’m Lying is Ryan Holiday.

    What to read after Trust Me, I’m Lying?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Trust Me, I’m Lying, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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    • Campaigns that Shook the World by Danny Rogers
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    • Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
    • Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday