Misinformation on Social Media: Z Media Institute’s Radical Approach to News Consumption

The Z Media Institute

Gen Z and millennials consume news a lot. But they often get their information through social media, where the facts are frequently incorrect.

Z media institute was founded in 1994 by the co-founders of Z Magazine and South End Press to teach radical politics, media and organizing skills, nonhierarchical institutions and projects, and vision and strategy for change. It has since been regrouped as part of ZNetwork.


While the political content of Z Magazine and its sister website Z Net has shifted over the decades, it remains, in broad terms, libertarian socialist, anti-capitalist, anarcho-socialist, anti-racist, and heavily influenced by participatory economics. Its editorial staff seek to promote fundamental social change by addressing the racial, gender, class, and political dimensions of life.

Z Communications (home to the radical publishing house South End Press, the leftist clearinghouse website Z Net and the video production company Z Videos) operates under a tax-exempt foundation. Its founders sought to create a nonhierarchical organization with participatory principles of equity, solidarity, self-management and diversity.

Michael Albert, who co-founded Z Magazine and its companion online project Z Net in 1986, continues to work full time on a range of political projects — including organizing, writing, facilitating meetings, and leading discussions and seminars. He also reads extensively (with an emphasis on history, science, physics, evolutionary theory and math), plays a mean game of chess and sea kayaks in his spare time.


The institute is actively involved in research concerning the transformation processes of media-based public communication. This includes the study of media-based public communication as a social process and the development of new forms of nonhierarchical media structures.

The Institute has a long tradition of teaching radical politics, media and organizing skills, the principles and practice of creating nonhierarchical institutions and projects, and vision & strategy for activists. This click-through instructional series remains in its original format and gives a slightly retro experience but still provides an excellent overview of key topics.

Z Media’s sister website, Z Net, mirrors leftist articles from around the world each week and displays them by topic categories. The site features work by such writers as Leslie Cagan, Noam Chomsky, Ward Churchill, Barbara Ehrenreich, Tom Engelhardt, Michael Albert, Howard Zinn, and others. The institute also produces a weekly newsletter called Z Newswire and an annual conference on the future of the media.


z media institute teaches radical politics, media and organizing skills, and participatory vision & strategy for activists. We support nonhierarchical projects and institutions that elevate equity, solidarity, self-management and diversity. We promote an anticapitalist, democratic socialist, and anarcho-communist perspective.

Founded in 1979, The Media Institute publishes issue papers and policy analyses, prepares regulatory filings and legal briefs, convenes conferences, hosts a national communications forum luncheon series in Washington, DC, and founded Free Speech Week. It is a leading advocate of the First Amendment and supports a competitive, dynamic media environment.

As part of the integrated service GermanoMedia, z media institute designs individual pr stragegies and advises clients with regard to their communication tools. In addition, z media institute develops guidelines and provides services to check, evaluate and revise existing communications tools. With a mobile studio, it also captures client events and produces new photography. PrimePhoto is a subsidiary of z media institute and concentrates on corporate portraits and product photography.

Vision & Strategy

Z MEDIA offers clients an integrated service of PR, photography and consultancy. They design and implement strategies for their brands. They also check and refine communication tools already in use.

The letter “Z” in our name is more than just a coincidence: Z MEDIA stands for “Zelinski” and represents the founders’ philosophy and values. The firm was established to fill a gap in the market: there were many companies with great products but who did not have the skills or courage to promote themselves effectively.

Z Communications is a left-wing activist-oriented publishing house that owns and publishes Z Magazine, the internet clearinghouse Z Net, and the video production company Z Videos. Its editorial policy is influenced by a vision of economics known as participatory economics. It is run as a non profit and operated internally according to the principles of equity, solidarity, self-management, diversity, and internationalism. It is a member of the International Organization for a Participatory Society.

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