Breaking News Consumer's Handbook Bot

Once upon a time (2013-ish), WNYC's illuminating show On the Media created a helpful series called the "Breaking News Consumer's Handbook."

The handbooks (and OTM generally) provide well-researched and well-reasoned guidance for navigating the immense insanity of the informational ocean that many of us lost souls drift around. The radio stories that are the basis of the handbooks are well-worth listening to, but OTM also produces little poster-images for each edition.

At another time, Paul Ford suggested (jokingly, probably, and darkly so) that it could be interesting for a bot to tweet out the handbooks regularly. This caught my attention, so months later I tried to make that happen.

The bot tweets out one of the handbooks each day or so. And if you @mention it and include one of the slugs from the table below, it should reply with an image of the corresponding handbook. (Err, this will work once all the handbooks have been tweeted at least once. So by January 12, 2017 or so.)

I transcribed the handbooks and edited them lightly for tweetability. You are more than welcome to peruse these edits (transparency!) and get in touch about critiques, typos, or other feedback. I plan to add new handbooks when they come out.

Curious to learn what you think of this. And remember to listen to On the Media! It's one of the most effective ways I've found to stay informed about all the most important things that happen in the world. And generally a good time, too.

List of handbooks

e.g. Try tweeting `@newsconsumerbot Could you please get me the fake-news edition?`

If you're @onthemedia, @OTMBrooke, @Bobosphere, or @ftrain, the bot will tweetstorm the whole handbook. Otherwise it'll just @reply you with the appropriate image.

originalThe Breaking News Consumer's Handbook
airlineAirline Edition
diseaseInfectious Disease Edition
tectonicTectonic Edition
breachData Breach Edition
witnessBearing Witness Edition
marketStock Market Volatility Edition
scotusSCOTUS Edition
terrorismTerrorism Edition
pollsElection Polls Edition
celebrityCelebrity Expert Edition
healthHealth News Edition
coupMilitary Coup Edition
migrationMigration Edition
polls-2Election Polls Edition, Part 2
islamophobiaIslamophobia Edition
povertyPoverty in America Edition
fake-newsFake News Edition
protestProtest Edition