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Ten tips for assessing the credibility of news

14.04.2020

A great deal of news reaches us daily through online media outlets, blog posts and social media platforms. Unfortunately, whether intentionally or not, misinformation is also spread.

How to make sure that the articles and social media posts you read and watch are true?

Here are ten tips for assessing the credibility of news.

BE SCEPTICAL OF HEADLINES – Fake news often has emotionally charged headlines with exclamation marks. If the headline makes incredible claims, they probably are.

LOOK CLOSELY AT THE WEBSITE ADDRESS – A URL that seems fake or is very similar to the address of another known website should be considered a warning sign. Many fake news websites have an address similar to that of a well-known media outlet. Therefore, compare the addresses of online sources.

GET TO KNOW THE SOURCE – Make sure that the story comes from a reliable and reputable source. If you haven’t heard of the news organisation before, seek additional information.

LOOK OUT FOR PECULIAR FORMATTING – Many fake news websites use uncommon formatting and have typos in their articles.

LOOK AT THE IMAGES – Fake news often contains manipulated images or recordings. They may be authentic, but used out of context. Determine the source of visual materials.

CHECK THE DATES – Fake news may contain incorrect and altered dates.

CHECK THE SOURCES AND REFERENCES – Make sure that the author has listed their exact sources. A low number of sources and references to unknown experts are an indication of a possible fake news article.

LOOK AT OTHER ONLINE NEWS OUTLETS – If no other news outlet refers to a given article, it might be inaccurate.

IS IT A JOKE? – Sometimes it may be difficult to differentiate a fake news article from parody and satire. A good clue is this: if the article is from a source that has written parodies before, it’s probably fake.

SOME ARTICLES ARE INTENTIONALLY FAKE – Be critical of all news and only share news that is credible.

Sources: Facebook Help Centre, HITSA, Targalt internetis

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