“What’s happening right now is complicated, and the public at large is coping with trying to raise families, put food on the table, gain and hold work in a COVID world,” says Jamieson, a professor of communication at the Annenberg School for Communication and director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center, whose projects include FactCheck.org and SciCheck. “Attention to the ins and outs of voter interference are probably not on the radar of ordinary people.”
Yet, according to Jamieson, it’s now more important than ever to pay attention. In some ways, the country is better prepared today than during the 2016 election cycle, which was fraught with cybertrolls, hacked emails, and leaked content. In other ways, the United States hasn’t learned much from that experience, which Jamieson chronicled in her award-winning 2018 book “Cyberwar” and the update out this summer.
Penn Today spoke with Jamieson about how this election looks different from four years ago, why voting by mail is likely more resistant to fraud than voting electronically, and much more.
Kathleen Hall Jamieson is the Elizabeth Ware Packard Professor of Communication in the Annenberg School for Communication, Walter and Leonore Annenberg Director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, and program director of the Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands. She has authored or co-authored 16 books, most recently Cyberwar: How Russian Hackers and Trolls Helped Elect a President, which won the 2019 R.R. Hawkins Award, the Association of American Publishers’ highest prize.