Fake news. You love it, or you hate it.
People love to read it and may not realize it, telling everyone they hate it.
The phrase “fake news” is nothing new if you followed the 2016 election, but it is making headlines more often than ever. While fake news exists, the phrase is oftentimes used to discredit credible news organizations, such as CNN and The New York Times.
When someone calls a news article fake, it’s usually because they don’t agree with it.
Fake news is just as it sounds: news that is fabricated or made up. When someone thinks of fake news, outlandish tabloids usually come to mind, such as National Enquirer with “Hillary: 6 Months to live,” or “Cosby had son murdered” plastered on the cover. The headlines are bold and bright, used to catch people’s attention — the more outlandish it is, the more it will catch a person’s eye.
Most people have enough common sense to know those stories are fake. But now more than ever, it’s trickier to differentiate these stories when our president is calling articles from several national news outlets “fake.”
News organizations like NBC, The New York Times and CNN have always been known for their credibility. They aren’t perfect. They still have to run corrections when they make mistakes, but they are more credible than other sources out there.
By calling credible news sources “fake,” it adds to the war on media. Everyone thinks they are experts on what is happening, even more so than journalists who spend most of their days researching and reporting on the news.
The fake news mentality is causing more and more people to discredit media entities that are known to be credible. When the population believes the fake news mentality, they often lean toward Facebook posts as their main source of news.
Not every article you find on Facebook is credible, and is usually known as click bait.
For example, did you see the article floating around social media about how Vice President Mike Pence was “horrified to discover unisex toilet in own house”? It was posted by a website called The Chaser. Upon looking at the website, you’ll find other outlandish headlines, such as “Astronomers discover fifteen-year-old girl is ‘centre’ of universe.”
A quick Google search will tell you The Chaser is a satire website, similar to The Onion. It’s common to see people share articles thinking they are real news articles. In reality, these articles are not the truth — they’re basically fake news.
The more outlandish the headline, the easier it is to spot fake news.
When reading articles, people must be diligent and check the sources they’re reading. Is it a credible website? Do a quick Google search, and if you find that it is not credible, you’re probably reading fake news.
OUR POSITION: The staff believes that people should always check the sources of what they are reading so they do not read fake news and think that it is truth.
The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various authors in the opinion section do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the entire The Franklin staff. Opinion editor Christina Ramey moderates the board and its members, including Brittney Corum, Adrianna Pitrelli, Matt Thomas and Ashley Steeb. Leigh Durphey, the executive editor, sits on the board. If you have an issue you would like the board to cover, email firstname.lastname@example.org.