“How should I know what I think before I have seen what I want to say?”, goes a saying frequently cited by media experts. How can we understand the role of the media in today’s world when they increasingly represent the interests of the political and corporate elites? How can we talk about trust and values when traditional understandings and norms take a course of their own or are carefully and skillfully directed by sophisticated manipulators of people’s fears? In 2016, a year of massive divisions, “the magic bullet” of propaganda ran not only through the traditional media, but also online. The social media grew from a public opinion laboratory into a driver of disinformation and the spread of fake news. The media produce news we can do without. What is the role of the audience which has seemingly given in to the “magic flute” of fear and hatred and prefers to remain sheepishly silent when the media transform personal tragedies into nationwide mourning.