JRN 4400 Reading Response

Fake News

How do you detect fake news? I believe this is a trick question. Fake news is defined as information that is made up and does not have a credible source. Fake news is made to look like journalistic works, manipulated of course. I like to think of it as “here-say.” Fake news cannot be detected if you do not have any knowledge on the topic. Fake news seems to be generated around our culture with ulterior motives: to make money or just to get a reaction out of the audience. Social media play a huge roll in fake news. Due to the vast majority that every social network has the ability to reach, people can say just about anything.

Anyone can say just about anything behind a computer screen. I feel like I have a good grasp on what I know to be true and what I know to be false. However, I still believe that it is a 50/50 chance of stating what is fake or not.

In an article listed by the Pew Research Center, about ‘45% of adults in the U.S. believe that politicians, elected officials, and the government are responsible for making sure that made-up stories are not to receive any attention.’

Fake news causes confusion for everyone. This type of news does not just effect one audience. In an article on the New York Times website, a man took certain words that came from Trump’s mouth and twisted the story around to push voters in favor of Trump. There was a time during the presidential election that Donald Trump was prepared to come behind Hilary Clinton. While at a rally in Columbus, Ohio, Trump told the audience that the election is “rigged.”

College graduate Cameron Harris took matters into his own hands to write a fake story stating that the election was indeed rigged and that perceived Clinton in a negative light. Harris had an interest in Maryland Republican politics and was itching to get his foot in the doors of journalism… however he forgot one thing.

JOURNALISTS ARE SUPPOSED TO REMAIN IMPARTIAL. Journalists are not allowed to put their opinions in one of their pieces. Journalists are not allowed to craft a story to their liking. They are supposed to write for the public and only the public. As far as I am concerned… Harris has ruined his name in the journalism field by spreading a false story.

It’s no secret that fake news has been around for quite sometime. Fake news became more popular recently throughout the presidential election of Trump and Clinton.

I think social media had played a huge role in this. During the Obama presidency, he aimed to attract young men and women to politics. He succeeded which only paved a pathway for young voters to continue to be interested in politics during our recent presidential election. The way to appeal to young voters is through social media. For the younger audience, this serves as our main communication line.

An article posted on NPR tells the story of the reporter, Scott Shane, who wrote the story “From Headline to Photograph, A Fake News Masterpiece” involving Cameron Harris(discussed above) and what he thought on the matter.

Shane expressed to NPR that the piece was very well written… but it was fake. Shane said that he does not understand how someone could write something that they know is false from the beginning, and still receive credentials for it. I have to agree with Shane on this one.

I do not think fake news is going anywhere anytime soon.