NPR broadcast (1/23/2017) media reporters talk about what can be done to fight what’s often called “fake news,” and the false accusations of “fake news.” Plus, a news literacy expert provides tips on how not to get duped by fiction masquerading as journalism
Work Laterally - When you open up a news article in your browser, open a second, empty tab. Use that second window to look up claims, author credentials and organizations that you come across in the article.
Work to Avoid Confirmation Bias and Information Bubbles - Is your search language biased? Are you paying more attention to the information that confirms your own beliefs and ignoring evidence that does not? Is your search engine an information bubble where items that support a particular point of view tend to rise to the top?
Check the author - Is the author a credible authority on the topic? Is the author real? Check LinkedIn or do a quick Google search to see if the author can speak about he subject with authority and accuracy.
Be suspicious of pictures - Not all photographs tell the unfiltered truth. A Google reverse image search can help discover the source of an image and its possible variations.
Check for an About section - Does the resource have one? It may be on a tab at the top of the page or a link at the bottom of the page, but reputable websites will include information about the website and its publisher.
Look for Bias - Are you getting the whole story? Does the article seem to lean toward a particular point of view?
Interrogate urls - We see quite a bit of domain manipulation these days. For instance, what looks like an .edu domain, followed by .co or “lo” is likely a fake or deceptive site. If you are you seeing a slightly variant version of a well-known URL, do a little investigating..