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How fake news can spread?

«A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.»

Mark Twain

Even though this wonderful quote has been attributed to Mark Twain since a long time ago, there’s no explicit evidence he ever said nor wrote it. Thus, it proves the whole point especially today when it is truer than ever before.

In the current digital era, it is pretty common to find re-reporting news outlets. The speed with which information spreads now has created the ideal conditions for a phenomenon called circular reporting. This practice occurs, for example, when multiple publications report the same initial piece of false information, which then appears to another author as having been verified by multiple sources.

Other common means of false information spreading are joke articles and pseudoscientific papers, which often lead to the creation of movements and social disruptions. User-generated content is often perceived as misleading due to the reliance of writers on suspicious and unverified sources.

Sensationalist media reaches high peaks of audience due to the coverage and report of topics that move emotions within public opinion but are not necessarily based on impartial sources.

Here are some questions that might help you to analyze this topic:

  • How do you keep up with the news?
  • How can you know that the information you’ve read/heard is not fabricated?
  • How can fake news affect our everyday lives?

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