Impact of Fake News

Illustration By: Andrew Khanian

Illustration By: Andrew Khanian

As society is becoming more reliant on social media for the news, our society is becoming misinformed with fake news that grabs attention from their titles. We now have a large number of sources of information that make it easier and more common than ever to share and believe the fake news.

Michelle Menjivar, a communications professor at Santa Monica College, recently fell for a fake news story and shared it on Facebook. The article stated that Cadbury Chocolate had a former employee contaminate the chocolate with his HIV blood. “The reason why I did not recognize this one is because there is a lot of Cadbury chocolate and I just jumped into conclusion because I was afraid the catch line got me," Menjivar said. "I definitely think that I should have read the article in depth and I would have figured out that it was a hook."

In fact, it is getting harder to get information because of their important number. On the internet, information circulates fast and is hard to sort through what is true and false, compounded by the fact that many do not read the entire article. In order to limit the circulation of fake news, it is important to read the full article before sharing it with someone else.

Secondly, due to fake news, it is important to read at least two different articles in order to check if the story is real or not. According to Menjivar, sources that do not come from a reputable sources may be fake news, in opposition to real news where “all sources have to have a testimony and interview from people who are either an expert or a witness."

Reading articles written by well-known sources is one of the best ways to get your information. However, it is necessary to remain critical and do extra research to ensure the given facts are true.

People should also understand that information posted on social media may not be reliable, because everyone can share their own news stories on these platforms. There may a lot of relevant information on social media, but it is important to wait for the confirmation of a reputable source before blindly believing and sharing it with more people.

It is important to pay attention to all the information that we get because fake news can have a terrible impact on the society, even more, when the story is a negative one. It is still possible to get good information in our digital society; it just requires us to be more critical and make sure to check several reliable sources before believing it.