Leveraging the Rhetorical Energies of Machines: COVID-19, Misinformation, and Persuasive Labor

Miles C. Coleman
2021 Human-Machine Communication  
The rampant misinformation amid the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates an obvious need for persuasion. This article draws on the fields of digital rhetoric and rhetoric of science, technology, and medicine to explore the persuasive threats and opportunities machine communicators pose to public health. As a specific case, Alexa and the machine's performative similarities to the Oracle at Delphi are tracked alongside the voice-based assistant's further resonances with the discourses of expert systems
more » ... to develop an account of the machine's rhetorical energies. From here, machine communicators are discussed as optimal deliverers of inoculations against misinformation in light of the fact that their performances are attended by rhetorical energies that can enliven persuasions against misinformation.
doi:10.30658/hmc.3.2 doaj:427b0eabd01d4843ab2dc8582f71fbeb fatcat:tnxy23kd3fag5gmrrsxbb2m5ui