‘The truth is, it is not a new phenomenon as time immemorial governments all over and powerful individuals have used information as a weapon for millennia, to boost their support and quash dissidence. ‘
FAKE NEWS WEAPONIZED IS A NEW AND EMERGING THREAT TO DEMOCRACY ASEAN & APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST, HUMAN RIGHTS & INTELLIGENCE LEAD DR JACOB GEORGE WARNS!
Shockingly the term “fake news” was not a term many people used 18 months ago, but it is now seen as one of the greatest threats to democracy, free debate, law and order and the future of what we all understood as truth!
Basically, the desire is that thought that if you keep calling an orange an apple long enough then all will call an orange an apple with the difference that some do it with the state apparatus in tow!
Of course, the father of this term is none other than that president under siege at the White House, Donald Trump!
And of course, again, thanks to him, it was also named 2017’s word of the year, raising tensions between nations, and may lead to regulation of social media, the manner democracy and free speech operates or not, how governments and dictators or corrupt politicians operate and attempt to survive the world over by criminalizing their political opponents and dissent!
And the truth is nobody can agree on what it is, how much of a problem it is, and what to do about it.
The truth is, it is not a new phenomenon as time immemorial governments all over and powerful individuals have used information as a weapon for millennia, to boost their support and quash dissidence.
But now it has become an international pandemic!
But despite that we can use perhaps several tips to spot (and stop) fake news!
Do you know where your news is coming from?
Here are a few red flags to watch for:
If it is just farfetched to be true? Do not rust it!
Is the story so outrageous you cannot believe it?
We should also ask ourselves whether known/reputable news organizations are reporting on the same story?
Sometimes this is because of media bias, but generally there should always be more than one organization reporting on an event.
Does it pass the CRAAP test?
It is certainly not a vulgar term!
It is a handy acronym for:
Currency: When was it published?
Relevance: Is it created for the right audience?
Authority: Who wrote it?
Accuracy: Is the evidence backed up with data?
Purpose: Why was this created and is there an underlying bias?
And before you share the story or news use the 3S – Stop, Search and Subscribe!
Stop and think about the headline: does it tell you everything you need to know?
Search: Do you know this publication? How about the author? Google is your friend – do some quick searches to see what you can find.
Subscribe: As far as I understand the fastest and easiest way to become media literate is by subscribing to trustworthy, quality journalism not the media that has lost a number of defamation suits and are known to be peddlers of ugly, seditious, racist, bigotry, religious and race baiting stories!
It is going to get worse and may the ALMIGHTY help us all through!