Sinan Aral

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The Hype Machine

book | Non-Fiction | Sep 2020
US & Canada → Crown Publishing (Ed. Roger Scholl)
UK & Comm → HarperCollins (Ed. Ed Faulkner)

Social media connected the world — and gave rise to fake news and increasing polarization. Now a leading researcher at MIT draws on 20 years of research to show how these trends threaten our political, economic, and emotional health in this eye-opening exploration of the dark side of technological progress.

Today we have the ability, unprecedented in human history, to amplify our interactions with each other through social media. It is paramount, MIT social media expert Sinan Aral says, that we recognize the outsized impact social media has on our culture, our democracy, and our lives in order to steer today's social technology toward good, while avoiding the ways it can pull us apart. Otherwise, we could fall victim to what Aral calls "The Hype Machine." As a senior researcher of the longest-running study of fake news ever conducted, Aral found that lies spread online farther and faster than the truth.

Among the questions Aral explores following twenty years of field research:

- Did Russian interference change the 2016 election? And how is it affecting the vote in 2020?

- Why does fake news travel faster than the truth online?

- How do social ratings and automated sharing determine which products succeed and fail?

- How does social media affect our kids?

First, Aral links alarming data and statistics to three accelerating social media shifts: hyper-socialization, personalized mass persuasion, and the tyranny of trends. Next, he grapples with the consequences of the Hype Machine for elections, businesses, dating, and health. Finally, he maps out strategies for navigating the Hype Machine, offering his singular guidance for managing social media to fulfill its promise going forward.


Audio Rights


Jake Smith-Bosanquet manages the translation rights for The Hype Machine

Film Rights


Contact Raphael Sagalyn for more information

Translation Rights Sold

Chinese Complex
Commonwealth Publishing Co.
Chinese Simple
Mainland China
CITIC Publishing Group
Edizioni Angelo Guerini e Associati
Diamond Inc Japan
Sam and Parkers
Eksmo Publishers
Can Yayinlari

This is the most important book of the year! Our friendships, economy, and society now depend on billions of social media connections, and no one on the planet understands them better than Sinan Aral. . . . A lively, engaging masterpiece.

Erik Brynjolfsson
co-author of The Second Machine Age

Full of rigor and insight, The Hype Machine tackles some of the most pressing policy questions of the Digital Age while keeping you on the edge of your seat. . . . A must-read for policy makers, business executives, and parents alike.

DJ Patil
former U.S. chief data scientist

In a sea of books about social media, this is the one to read. Aral understands the new social age like no one else, and The Hype Machine offers the single best examination of how social media works and how we can make it better

Clint Watts
author of Messing with the Enemy

The Hype Machine is a riveting story of social media’s impact on how we live. Part spy novel and part science thriller, this book is an essential guide to ensuring our digital future.

Jonah Berger
author of Contagious

A meticulous dissection of social media . . . Aral gives us a much-needed framework for understanding what happened in the 2016 election, and what will likely happen again if nothing changes.

Scott Galloway
author of The Four

Raphael Sagalyn
+1 240 479 9610
Email Raphael Sagalyn
Gordon Wise
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Translation Rights
Jake Smith-Bosanquet
+44 (0)20 7393 4425
Email Jake Smith-Bosanquet