I’m at it again, over on Medium.
Let’s talk about real fake news. Not Donald Trump’s fake news (a.k.a. news he doesn’t like), but the fake news that is fiction–often crafted with malicious intent–disguised as fact.
Yes, it’s still important. Max Fisher, writing in today’s New York Times, points out that Facebook’s lack of action in limiting disinformation and hate speech on its platform has long been criticized in other countries. It’s just getting more attention now as we witness some of the same social unrest and real-time violence.
Karolin Schwarz, who runs a Berlin-based organization that tracks social media misinformation, said she believed Facebook-based rumors about refugees could be fueling the spate of hate crimes against them.
“I think it does something to their sense of community,” she said. “These things, if they reach thousands of people, you cannot get it back.”
Please consult my humble guide, or the many others from even better sources, for tips on evaluating what you see online.