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Fake News: Consider the Source

What is fake news?

Defined in Collins English Dictionary, FAKE NEWS is:

false, often sensational, information disseminated under the guise of news reporting

Examples of Questionable Sources

For an example of Fake News that was uncovered, see this example.

For an example of a website about secondhand smoke that is definitely not credible, click here.

Links to help you assess information

Scientific Fact Checking Sites

Both part of A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Political Fact Checking Sites

Learning to Spot Fake News

Fake News from the Present

How to Spot Fake News

  • Consider the Source - Click away from the story to investigate the site, its mission and its contact info.
  • Check the Author - Do a quick search on the author.  Are they credible?  Are they real?
  • Check the Date - Re-posting old news stories doesn't mean they're relevant to current trends.
  • Check your Biases - Consider if your own beliefs could affect your judgment.
  • Read Beyond - Headlines can be outrageous in an effort to get clicks.  What's the whole story?
  • Supporting Sources?  Click on those links.  Determine if the info given actually supports the story.
  • Is it a Joke?  If it is too outlandish, it might be satire.  Research the site and author to be sure.
  • Ask the Experts - Ask a librarian, or consult a fact-checking site.

(From the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions)

Evaluating Websites