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Listed: Tips on spotting Fake News and what you can do to stop it!

Fake News

Shelley Finch, our go-to-gal for all things newsworthy, shared an interesting post on Facebook about our social responsibility with regards to Fake News. She listed some great points and we had to share them with you.

 

Fake News is our nightmare, Good Things Guy actively works to ensure that Fake News never appears on our website and we even debunk some of the craziest stories for you. Recently, more people have become aware of what a click baited story looks like and proceed to scroll right on past them. But every once in a while, a new one catches us.

One of our brilliant contributors, Shelley Finch, recently shared her thoughts on the digital flea that is Fake News and we loved it! We asked her to share the information here and she said: “go for it!”.

This is what you can do today help end racism, bigotry, and hate: be a custodian of the TRUTH.

It is within your power to check the veracity of what you read on social media.

1. A world of knowledge is a Google search away. Not everything on Google is true either, but its a great way of exploring different perspectives. Especially if you click the “News” tab.

2. Interrogate the sources of the information you share. Check the Facebook page/Twitter account. Do they have an agenda or a specific narrative that all their content supports? Is there any evidence to refute their claims?

3. Don’t share a link or video if you haven’t read it in its entirety or watched it to the end. And then Google the news site/blog and decided whether it looks like a trusted source.

YOU have this power in your hands EVERY DAY. YOU have the power to keep yourself well informed. Please, please stop lazily sharing articles and videos without making a conscious effort to think about whether it offers a fair and balanced view of the topic.

This has become such a problem that Facebook has completely changed their algorithm. Because they found that people were liking and sharing content without actually engaging with it i.e. reading it or watching it. Thus contributing to the spread of “fake news”.

Please do not give up the privilege of being able to keep yourself informed. Please do not allow hate groups, political parties and lobbyists to use you as a mouthpiece without your knowledge and express consent.

THIS is a REAL and very POWERFUL opportunity you have to change the world for the better. Use it.

Tips for spotting Click-bait and Fake News:

  1. If the title is in all CAPS or the image clearly looks photoshopped, these are instant red flags.
  2. If the website has loads of pop-up ads and adverts with explicit images, it’s a click-bait site.
  3. Google the website name followed by the word “Fake” and you will see if others have complained about the site.
  4. Check the websites story source, if it doesn’t source its information… It’s probably fake!
  5. Check if other big media websites are reporting the same story.
  6. Check the domain name and URL, if it looks odd, it probably is odd.
  7. If you can’t tell if it is true, don’t share it.

On The Media shared an image that you can print and stick up near your computer so that you always have their tips on hand.


Sources: Shelley Finch
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Tyler Vivier
Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy. Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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