Fake News


Problem

Fake news comes in many different forms. These forms include: Commercially-driven sensational content, Nation state-sponsored misinformation, Highly-partisan news sites, Social media and Satire. These different variations of fake news make fake news extremely difficult to counter (Titcomb & Carson, 2018).

After false reports stated that president Jacob Zuma had resigned, the value of the South African rand went up with 1.1%. South Africa is especially prone to fake news because the politics are a lot stronger (IOL, 2018).

Background

There are 7 types of misinformation/disinformation (Wardle, 2017):

Fake news is created for the following reasons: Poor Journalism, Parody, To Provoke, Political influence and Propaganda. Fake news is being disseminated by the following means: People share it unwittingly on social media, some groups push out fake news deliberately to influence public opinion and some fake news is being disseminated as part of sophisticated disinformation campaigns. Every time that we passively accept or share information without double checking, we are contributing to the problem of fake news (Wardle, 2017).

Solution

The problem of fake news can be solved by educating people on how to spot and to avoid fake news.

Facebook provides the following tips to spot fake news (Titcomb & Carson, 2018):