The rise of online journalism and social media has led online articles to be continuously published. Moreover, social media as the platform for publishing articles also became accessible to everyone. And, with that thought alone, we cannot control which ones will mislead and victimize people through fake news.
Before sharing and believing an article, people must first ensure the credibility of the source. In addition, some headlines and featured photos contain clickbait so it would be better to read all throughout. Lastly, if an article seems suspicious, always fact-check right after and search for more information from trusted sources.
Reasons why we should fact-check before sharing
1. Some clickbaity headlines may mislead the readers.
Before reacting to a certain headline, consider reading the whole article. In addition, the rest of the needed information will be in the body of the article and not on the headlines alone. Moreover, the headlines from newspapers, online news outlets, and magazines aims to catch attention, because that will be the first thing that the people will see from the article.
2. Photos and contents can easily be edited or manipulated
Moreover, because of the accessibility of social media, anyone can share content using either their real or a dummy account. To add to this, even the photos can be freely downloaded and can be easily edited with misleading texts. Be careful with these kinds of content and start fact-checking before sharing.
3. Fabricated quotes and statements spreads everywhere
In connection, quotes and statements makes no exception to manipulation or fabrication. To add to this, using famous personalities may convince people into believing the person’s alleged statement. These fabricated contents may or may not stain the person’s name. So it would be better to fact-check to avoid giving the person a bad reputation.
4. Disinformation exists
Disinformation refers to false information which is intended to mislead, especially propaganda issued by a government organization to a rival power or the media. Upon spreading fake news or disinformation, people will be the most affected because of it. Most especially if the content causes fear and panic. Moreover, truth does not necessarily scare people nor exaggerate. In addition, the truth will only aim to inform people and the media may lead them of what needs to be done to avoid panic.
In becoming a better netizen, spreading disinformation would be a big no-no.
Building a healthier social media newsfeed means that your profile would be a safe ground to be informed. All in all, being social media literate will make you harder to manipulate. From which the platform for spreading fake news would be harder because you already know what to do. In addition, you cannot control the spread of false information, but you can regulate it by not sharing it.
Think before you click and know that fact-checking before sharing or reacting is a must!
Paulette Annefreid Vivar is a journalism student from Cavite State University Indang Campus. She is a musically-inclined student journalist who loves to write poetry and to speak figuratively in her creative works, to compose songs and to sing.