Frequently forwarded messages on Whatsapp groups and fake news reports on social media channels – we are all familiar with the concept of growing fake news problems. The impact of fake news is such that it tends to disrupt the existing structure. So, with the potential of destroying democratic, financial, and societal structures, it becomes even more vital to nip the spread of misinformation in the bud.
You see fake news not only leads to disruption but it also causes violence. Take coronavirus, for instance, it is a big pandemic. Unfortunately, with false information circulating all over social media channels, it is difficult to keep tabs on what is good and what is bad. All thanks to the World Health Organization, we can find answers to all the important questions on their website. However, some people do find themselves amidst false information and the only solution to such issues is listed in this post below. Read on to find out.
What Is The Solution?
I am pretty sure that everyone is eager to find a decisive solution to this issue. Theoretically speaking, there is definitely not one solution to this problem. But there are many ways to curb this problem. In broader terms, there are a total of four solutions to the problem. First and foremost, tweaking algorithms and then inhibiting fake content and finally developing new algorithms to identify manipulative content. We can also pass laws against the spread of misinformation and then concentrate on improving the current fact-checking mechanism.
However, there is just one thing that we need to keep in mind: the accuracy of detection algorithms. The question of accuracy will overshadow all other aspects. This is why it becomes even more important to first identify the grey zones. On the other hand, human fact-checking is far better but checking the facts manually is very challenging. So, overall it is best to focus on prevention than combating the problem after it is already out there.
Prevention Is Better Than Cure
It is difficult to fight with a problem that has already spread its roots in society. So, the most effective solution here is to focus on prevention. The best way to describe the method of prevention is through inoculation theory. This theory aims at inhibiting resistance against persuasion. It is a psychological framework and has most people calling it works in case of people who fail at resisting unwanted persuasions. Let me give you an example, now we all know that we take vaccines to fight against anti-bodies and future infections. If this concept is applied to the current scenario. This is how it would look – exposing people to the concept of fake news generation. If as responsible individuals we understand how the mechanism of fake news works, we will be able to generate mental antibodies. After all, immunizing from false information is the key to prevention.
Stay Away From Political Biases
Bias is the reason why people fail to look at the actual facts in the story. There are political biases, campaigns that exploit the truth, and cognitive biases. The matter of fact is that most of us underestimate the power of misinformation. We believe in things that confirm our belief and the truth stands ignored. Perhaps the reason why most of us put faith in misinformation.
For instance, take a closer look at all the soundbites given by journalists on new channels. You will see how fact providers forget to see a complex situation objectively. Besides, there are several examples of news reporters inclining towards political biases. So, in these situations, you have to think critically, check the facts, stay open to skepticism, and always put faith in trusted sources.
Always Remember That Source Matters
Just like I mentioned earlier in the post, if you need information on COVID-19, visit the WHO website. It is a trusted source and the reason why the source of information matters. Let me give you another example, it is an obvious fact that you will believe New York Times more than some blog you found online. This also means that you have to put faith in trusted sources, particularly sources that are authentic. So, always check the URL of the website and then pay attention to the information you are reading. Further, check the source and see to it that it comes from a verified authority.