TRUTH, TRUST, VERIFICATION AND VALIDATION IN ACADEMIC COMMUNICATION: THE CHALLENGES OF ONLINE/SOCIAL MEDIA COMMUNICATION
Academic communication, at least in its formal written form, has been built on a long and strong history of systems of validation and verification since about the seventeenth century and the development of the European (Western) Enlightenment. This paper investigates the contemporary challenges that online communication and culture has to this longer and relatively stable structure of how academic knowledge has been constructed. Online communication has produced a culture of information instability, transformed professional and personal identity and a new insecurity in trust and verification. At the same time, online culture and communication has also produced an incredible and unparalleled system of shared information. Through a close study of the gap between online communication and the exigencies of academic communication, the paper attempts to provide a pathway for the contemporary academy to make this new system of communication contribute effectively and with major scholar moderation to new generations of knowledge.