About the Book Club
The IRC Book Club gives participants the opportunity to discuss foreign affairs, global topics, authors' perspectives, historical events, and their current local relevance in a respectful, engaging setting. Convened by seasoned Great Decisions leader Jack McLaren, the group meets every six to eight weeks to dig into a different author's work.
Tuesday, June 11, 2019 – 6:30-8 p.m.
Kauffman Foundation Conference Center (4801 Rockhill Road, Kansas City, MO 64110)
Session Leader: IRC member Ella Rose
This is a free program that is open to the public, though reservations are requested to help with planning. For those who would like to continue the discussion after 8:00, the group may move to some place like the Brooksider.
Like War: The Weaponization of Social Media
by P.W. Singer and Emerson Brooking – 416 pages
Available for purchase (hardback, paperback, or e-reader): Amazon »
We encourage you to visit local booksellers: Rainy Day Books ».
Local libraries have copies of the book and audiobook available.
Description: Through the weaponization of social media, the internet is changing war and politics, just as war and politics are changing the internet. Terrorists livestream their attacks, “Twitter wars” produce real‑world casualties, and viral misinformation alters not just the result of battles, but the very fate of nations. The result is that war, tech, and politics have blurred into a new kind of battlespace that plays out on our smartphones.
P. W. Singer and Emerson Brooking tackle the mind‑bending questions that arise when war goes online and the online world goes to war. They explore how ISIS copies the Instagram tactics of Taylor Swift, a former World of Warcraft addict foils war crimes thousands of miles away, internet trolls shape elections, and China uses a smartphone app to police the thoughts of 1.4 billion citizens. What can be kept secret in a world of networks? Does social media expose the truth or bury it? And what role do ordinary people now play in international conflicts?
Delving into the web’s darkest corners, we meet the unexpected warriors of social media, such as the rapper turned jihadist PR czar and the Russian hipsters who wage unceasing infowars against the West. Finally, looking to the crucial years ahead, LikeWar outlines a radical new paradigm for understanding and defending against the unprecedented threats of our networked world.