Years ago, the term "Agent Provocateur" was created.
It's French....if you were curious about the pronunciation.
It was historical in nature....meaning basically that you (the agent provocateur) helping or enticing someone to do something (typically illegal) in a careless way....without thinking over the event or the consequence of the act. The agent provocateur himself? They often felt compelled to do this out of loyalty to a group or a creed.....or simply were employed by someone who needed something devious done.
Note this entire act by the agent provocateur could be for an entirely peaceful event (a march or a demonstration). This could be simply for a student gathering to ensure various 'mouth-pieces' exist to talk to the press or get the message out. This could just be for wording a document that will be sent in mass to various journalists to ensure that they use their manipulation capability to carry the message further.
Could the agent provocateur be a journalists? Yes. They could undertake a cause close to them and help to form a message or fake public sentiment....to ensure some successful conclusion of the act.
In recent years, the police in America were great at using agent provocateur folks....to get on the inside of groups. But you can find political action groups who have used the format to get their message carried direct to the public.
The problem for the general public? Basically, you are stuck there reading through a news piece, or watching some interview, or getting a live coverage piece of some riot.....wondering who is the agent provocateur in this case. Is it the intellectual gal who is mostly talking for the demonstration? Is it the CNN guy who seems to have lots of facts? Is it the Fox News journalist who seems very determined to tell the story in a certain way?
People are stuck having to ask stupid questions and wonder who the agent provocateur really is. All of this complicates the process of assembling information and determining what is news and what are the real facts over an episode.
Yes, we've dug a pretty deep hole and seem to have fallen into it.