Understanding the Media

Accessing information in 2017 is easier than ever before with the introduction of new and bettering technology and the popularity of social media surging. Never before have we been able to gain knowledge of information haft a world away in less than a second or communicate with people in other countries with such ease. Anyone anywhere in the world can say anything at any point in time and be heard by others all across the globe. With this wave of new information comes the danger of misinformation or Fake News as it is often called. As news and information on these popular social media sites and news channels have become more tailored to our likes, we have seen a general decline in fact-checking done by the publisher.

Many news outlets play off of our enjoyment of drama and have begun to publish articles without gaining multiple credible sources to cross-reference. False news has spread across platforms, from Social Media, to News Paper and most commonly during the decent presidential election to TV news channels. It can be very hard to discern real factual news from “Fake News” so it is very important to always test the factuality of the event when reading and before possibly sharing with your friends.

There are a few quick tips to consider when reading an article or a post to determine if the information is true or if it is hearsay false rumors. First and most important is to ALWAYS use credible sources with a publisher and an editor, this will ensure that the information has been checked and is often the truth. But what happens when a publisher that is credible begins to post glamorized or post false information in order to keep their reading circulation up? The second tip helps with this, Cross-referencing credible sources of information is an easy way to make sure that the first piece you read was not biased or false in any way. Sometimes when a big story breaks it is important to check three to four other credible sources in order to make sure it is not just an oddball article that contains false information.

These simple tips will help you become a more informed member of society while keeping a watchful eye over the news outlets for “Fake News”. Now when you are browsing the internet and see an article or story that peaks your interest you are equipped to determine its validity.

By, William Moseley

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