According to a new Stanford study, students are having a difficult time differentiating fact from fiction as they are constantly barraged with media from varying sources, The Wall Street Journal reports here. Furthermore, the Media Insight Group reveals in their 2015 study that by the age of 18, as many as 88% of their survey respondents regularly get new from Facebook and other social media sources.
So, there is a lot of misinformation out there, as we all know. And being “information literate” or “media literate” requires us to be vigilant in fact checking and vetting our sources.
Luckily, there are some resources you can consult to give you a hand. For example, Melissa Zimdar, Ph.D., an assistant professor of communication and media at Merrimack College is compiling a list of “False, Misleading, Clickbait-y, and Satirical “News” Sources” that you can review here (it’s a work in progress). This page also includes some tips for analyzing news sources which is very helpful.
For more reading on this topic, check out this list compiled by a group of librarians: fake-news-bad-news-evaluation-resources of articles about the issue. And as ever, feel free to talk to your librarian, Elsa, who is always happy to commiserate and help you navigate the sometimes treacherous waters of the news.
Below is a link to a video put out by a Swedish fact-checking organization called Viral Examiner, or Viralgranskaren about a false news article about the reason for a Christmas light ban. It’s an example of viral outrage in response to misinformation.