Joan Donovan and Emily Dreyfuss

San Francisco

Joan Donovan and Emily Dreyfuss: Meme Wars

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Just how dangerous are memes? The power of memes has grown and is now a weapon used to push disinformation, spread ideologies, and deepen partisanship. They are fueling a cultural war that continues to accelerate and intensify.

Joan Donovan and Emily Dreyfuss recount how “Stop the Steal” went from online to real life. They reveal startling secrets from the digital war rooms and the troubling developments led by conspiracists and extremists to upend our country’s democracy.

As the battle continues, learn more about what could be at stake for the future of our country.


This program has 2 types of tickets available: In-person and online-only. Please pre-register to receive a link to the live-stream event.

Safety Protocols for in-person attendance:

  • We follow best practices laid out by the CDC and state and local guidelines.
  • We strongly recommend vaccination for guests, staff, and volunteers.
  • Masks are strongly encouraged while indoors (if you do not have one and would like one, inquire at our front desk for a complimentary mask).
  • We reserve the right to require different rules for specific events as necessary.

Our LEED Gold-certified building is designed to cool with outside air, using digitally controlled moveable windows and large ceiling fans. We are deploying additional HEPA filters inside to scrub the air. This is all in addition to increased cleaning of surfaces throughout the building.

Copies of Meme Wars are available for purchase during check-out (U.S. domestic shipping only).

We welcome donations made during registration to support the production of our online programming.

Donovan photo by Martha Stewart.

All ticket sales are final and nonrefundable.

Tue, Oct 4 / 6:00 pm PDT

The Commonwealth Club of California
110 The Embarcadero
Taube Family Auditorium
San Francisco, CA 94105
United States

Image - Joan Donovan

Joan Donovan

Research Director, Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center; Co-author, Meme Wars: The Untold Story of the Online Battles Upending Democracy in America

Image - Emily Dreyfuss

Emily Dreyfuss

Journalist; Co-author, Meme Wars: The Untold Story of the Online Battles Upending Democracy in America

Image - Lauren Goode

In Conversation with Lauren Goode

 Senior Editor, Wired


5:30 p.m. doors open & check-in
6 p.m. program
7 p.m. Book Signing
(all times )


$10 members
$20 nonmembers
$40 members with book
$50 nonmembers with book
$5 members
$10 nonmembers
$35 members with book
$40 nonmembers with book