Fake news and how to spot it: Tech Tuesday

Reputable media houses put accurate information before sales.

‘You are fake news’ is Donald Trump’s major contribution to the meme culture.

Yet he also (shockingly) helped point out glaring chasms in news reporting worldwide.

 

 

Websites are riddled with nonsense articles and misleading headlines.

And keyboard warriors are all too keen to hit like and share first.

So how can readers prevent themselves from spreading misinformation?

Is it satire?

Often, readers latch onto an article and take its contents at face value.

They often fail to realise which articles are real however, and which are ‘jokes’.

Websites such as The Onion are satirical and meant to be taken light heartedly.

Is the source reputable?

Some publications are known for spreading false information.

Sadly, bogus headlines and flawed arguments are an easy way to boost readership and sales.

Established media houses are the best bet for accurate reporting.

Are major media houses onto the story?

Imagine seeing an article on Facebook titled ‘Celebrity killed in collision’.

You click on the link and read the tragic account of how a local star has been snuffed out.

It’s all too common to just hit ‘share’ and let others mourn with you.

Yet the story is nowhere to be found on the major publication sites – why?

Rather confirm information either through a news house or even your own research.

Who’s the source?

It’s one thing to take your daily news from an established source each morning.

Relying on thisisnewsipromise.co.za is another entirely.

Another dead giveaway of fake news is often the author or supporting links.

Check who wrote the article and if the sources quoted are who they claim to be, or even real.

Are supporting links even relevant to the article?

Recent examples have shown even major media houses can be guilty of falsifying sources for their own benefit.

Think before you share

Fake news can do immeasurable harm to reputations and lives.

SAPS has also warned those guilty of spreading false information could face jail time.

 

For more blogs and articles on technonogy and gaming, visit Nerd Nest on newcastleadvertiser.co.za

  AUTHOR
Bruce Douglas
Journalist

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