Ade Camilleri - Digital Strategist

Admit, how many times have you been tricked into clicking on the missleading tittle and read some sort of fake news? I bet, more than once. With all the technologies at our fingertips, it become so easy to potray something like fake news as real facts and indeed, it’s very confusing and can at times cause a lot of damage. The recent fake news that comes to my mind, was about Miss Universe smuggling drugs into competition and these types of news make an appearance more often than we would want them to.

What Actually is Fake News?

According to GCF Learn Free, “…Fake news is any article or video containing untrue information disguised as a credible news source. Fake news typically comes from sites that specialize in bogus or sensationalized stories. It tends to use provocative headlines, like Celebrity endorses not brushing teeth or Politician selling toxic waste on the black market.”

However, as GCF points out, these stories are becoming increasingly dangerous in the digital age, with many people consuming stories on social media without fact checking or bothering to confirm that such headlines that aim for a “shock” factor even exist. Once these stories are shared and become popularized, enough people believe the story and accept the story as truthful. Oftentimes, this can even become subconscious. This cycle is vicious in the social media world, as stories that make it to the top of news feed are all-too-often untruthful clickbait.

Jokes and Satire Are Not Fake News

It is also incredibly important to mention that satire sites like The Onion and Clickhole, which feature funny stories based on relevant current events, are not “fake news.” They are smart satire pieces intended to be humorous — not real — and their entire sites are based around their readers being knowledgeable about this strategy and theme. With branding like Clickhole’s own “Because Everything Deserves to Go Viral” or The Onion’s “America’s Finest News Source,” their articles’ joking nature is intended to be common knowledge.

A Word on Mainstream News

For the most part, trust in major news sources really lies in the eye of the beholder. See the image below highlighting the most trusted major news sources in America (most of which are actually British), as found by Pew Research Center and cited by Business Insider. While there are discrepancies based on ideological views, most major news sources do have to undergo editorial reviews and are recognized as being prestigious forms of journalism. The BBC, PBS, NPR, the Wall Street Journal, ABC, NBC, CNN, USA Today, and Google News were among the most trusted across ideological groups (with the exception of consistently conservative folks — who favor BBC, Google News, and the Wall Street Journal).

Read more about fake news on SearchEngineJournal

Ade Camilleri is a leading Internet marketer and Data Marketing Analyst for some of the worlds leading Comapnies with a focus on Tourism, Public Companies, Government Organmisatioons and iGaming. He forms part of the Media Plan group of Copmpanies who provide Digital Marketing Services for iGaming, Tourtism and Fortune 500 Companies.