I recently received a message on Whatsapp praising highly of some political leaders. I became skeptical. Meanwhile, I quickly researched a bit and most of the facts were incorrect. So, how are you Fighting Fake News?
The election season is all around. As a result, fake news and rumors are growing day by day with the increase in the usage of social media.
So, how would you distinguish between real news and fake news that you receive on Whatsapp or Facebook?
Always check these 10 Things and also share this informative piece on your Whatsapp groups.
Always check the source from where exactly particular news is coming. Is it merely a text message with no source? Then it is likely to be fake news that is being forwarded over Whatsapp a multiple numbers of times.
Google a few keywords from that message and observe if the mainstream media is even talking about it or not.
Mainstream media includes all those websites belonging to your top news channels and newspapers.
Don’t merely read headlines. I know you are busy but don’t rely on headlines. Most of the time, many media houses just put a catchy headline to attract masses. However, the news comes out to be different.
“Alia Bhatt dating Salman Khan?”
When you will read the complete news article, you will realize that there was a question mark in the title and you ignored it. The final answer was, “No, they are not dating”
3] Date and Location
Always check the date and location of the news. Sometimes the news is true. But, the location and date are not true.
Recently a video surfaced on Whatsapp that claimed the pathetic condition of Railways in India.
However, it was true 7 years ago and that too somewhere in Bangladesh.
Here, the news was completely authentic but was not really true because of the wrong location and date.
4] Facts vs Assumptions
Always check the statistics when it comes to political or historical news. Above all, when you read a comparison between two parties or Governments then always check for the right parameters.
If a media house claims that a particular party is going to win in 2019 elections, then it is just a prediction. No facts or whatsoever are produced over there. This is to say, don’t believe directly.
5] Highly Positive or Highly Negative Messages
You might have already received hundreds of messages for praising a particular leader. Similarly, some messages even talk only about the negatives of a political figure.
Mind you, this is clear political propaganda.
I won’t take a political instance here. For example, there was a message floating on Whatsapp to delete Whatsapp and install Whatsapp Blue. However, this was fake news and an attempt to mislead people.
6] YouTube Comments
If you ever receive any video on Whatsapp then just search it out on YouTube. In addition, don’t just watch the video but have a look at the comment section.
Comment section plays a very important role because people generally point out the fake videos while discussing in the comment section. By any chance, if the comment section is disabled then it is 99% sure that the video is fake.
7] Fake and edited images
In this age of Photoshop, you cannot really distinguish between a fake image and a real image. How will you know the reality?
I have a way out. Use Google Reverse Image Search.
Download the image you want to check and upload using this icon on Google images. If another similar image appears then this image is clearly edited.
8] Fake and Shady Websites
Sometimes we receive fake messages and there is a link at the bottom of the message. It looks authentic, but it is not.
There are many websites that appear exactly the same as a real website. However, if you look closely then you will realize that it is not really a real website.
Always check the ‘About’ section and other details on that website. They will never mention contact details, addresses, details about the author, etc. Likewise, you will get to see lots of pop-up ads and requests asking for your details. Beware.
I won’t go too far. Take an example of my own website >> www.priteshpawar.com
You might receive messages from www.priteshpawarp2.com or www.pritespawar.com
These websites look approximately the same. Subsequently, these websites are totally fake.
9] Don’t believe political pages blindly
Almost every political party in India believes in showcasing the best things about themselves and defaming the rest of the parties. Certainly, that is how politics works. This is an important aspect of Fighting Fake News.
The data can be easily manipulated by showing the half-truth. Meanwhile, some other political pages will showcase some other pictures. In short, they show you what they want to show you.
Always follow the mixture of political pages that are leaning to your political ideology as well against your ideology. Also, don’t just follow one side. To sum up, no political page is 100% unbiased.
10] Use fact-checking websites
These are some of the best fact-checking websites on the Internet. You must check them out:
These websites bust the myths, hoaxes and fake news from time to time. In addition, you can even search for viral messages here.
India is a country where millions of people are using the Internet for the first time. Let’s educate them by spreading awareness. I hope now you know the ways for Fighting Fake News.
Let’s fight the fake news.