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Fake News Workshop

Learn how to read news like a fact checker!

When you land on an unfamiliar website, open a new tab.  Figure out where the information is coming from.

  • Google the author.
  • Google the organization or its president.
  • Wikipedia is actually really helpful in learning more about specific publications and blogs.
  • If the article cites a source, go to the actual source to see if the claim is true.

It’s not about “About”

  • If the site is trying to fool people, they can certainly make up a great “About” page.

Look past the order of search results

  • Google does NOT put the most reliable results first; it puts the most linked-to results and paid ads at the top.
  • Instead, look very carefully at URLs and abstracts.
  • Scroll down to the bottom of the results page, or even to the second page.

Check the date

  • The story may originally have been true, but is now falsely linked to a recent event.

Is this a joke?

  • The source may be a satirical site. Go to the original, not just the Facebook post.

Check your biases

  • Do you want to believe it because it confirms your feelings?

Consult the experts:‚Äč

These tips came from:

Workshop Takeaways

  • Look at the content/substance, not the surface
  • Having a perspective ≠ bias
  • Look for the characteristics of quality journalism (Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics)
  • Find the original source of the story
  • Keep your emotions in check

Adapted from