By: Gabriela Perez
The year is 2017. Donald Trump is President, Beyoncé is having twins, and the Jonas Brothers still haven’t gotten back together.
What do these things have in common? It’s the kind of news you’ll find while scrolling through your Twitter or Facebook feeds. These social media networks have become notorious for being a go-to source for news. Nowadays, everyone is one their phone, scrolling and scanning for the latest update on anything and everything.
Despite making news more accessible to the masses, sharing and receiving news from Twitter can become dangerous when it comes to matters of credibility. In the heat of the moment, most users aren’t prone to double-check the validity of what they are sharing with their followers. This is how most fake news is spread, a practice that is hurting the credibility of journalists, especially after the recent presidential election.
Donald Trump has continuously made a joke of the media and everything they stand for, causing a divide between the public and press. What Trump fails to understand is that it is a journalist’s job to call him out on any wrongdoings he commits and be a watchdog for the community. If Trump thinks that the media is going to back down after everything he has said and tweeted, he is severely mistaken.
However, the public can also play a part in ensuring that fake news isn’t spread worldwide. One of the best ways of verifying whether or not is a source is reliable is looking at the source itself. A lot of the fake news websites look similar to what a real news site actually looks like. It’s important to look for the small differences that make the website fake, like a URL ending in .co or a twitter handle that doesn’t correspond to the news source itself. NPR provides an excellent article on how to spot fake news.
We’re in a position where we can use Twitter and Facebook to our advantage and spread the truth about what is going on in the world. And with the continuous changes going on in government, it’s probably best to do so.