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Fighting back against fake news

Written By Kayla Snyder, Co-News Editor

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Chances are if you’re scrolling through your Facebook page, you’re bound to see something that catches your eye. When you click on that link, you’re taken to a website that seems credible. You continue reading into this story and you’re convinced that what you just read is real. What are the chances you go and double check your sources? Likely none.

The rise of fake news has been more prevalent than ever. Before the past election season, I personally do not remember an increase in the amount of fake material being spread throughout the internet. But now, we live in a world consumed by fake news.

The current president, Donald J. Trump, has created an open image of hostility when it comes to the media. If the media reports on something he isn’t a fan of, or agrees with, immediately the information gets labeled as fake news.

As journalists, isn’t it our jobs to tell the truth and be unbiased? Is President Trump unaware that media coverage isn’t always going to be sunshine and rainbows? It isn’t “fake news” if it doesn’t paint you in a positive light. That’s called public relations. This media thing is called journalism. There’s a difference between the two.

I don’t know if President Trump is aware of this fact. Even worse, if the media only shows one side of the story that becomes something known as propaganda.

You know, like the kind used in North Korea to brainwash its citizens. Maybe not to that extreme, but the concept is still the same.

My issue here doesn’t directly lie with the current president’s reaction towards the media. Am I upset about it? Yes. But what really enrages me is the fact that society is playing along with the idea of fake news. What’s the latest meme nowadays? Fake News? Alternative Facts? Something of the sort.

Society is harping on this idea that fake news is a joke. But in reality, fake news is a huge issue.

There are tons of fake news website sources out there providing what to the common eye looks like real information.

Some people have jobs based on the idea of spreading fake information. It’s sickening and disgusting and something I’m not okay with as someone who’s aspiring to go into a media-related field in the future.

My assumption is that everyone is under this preconceived notion that just because something exists in the way it does right now, it can’t be changed. To this, I say you’re wrong.

If society stops idolizing “fake news” and starts searching for real, credible sources, then maybe fake news will become a thing of the past.

President Trump is still going to label fake news as such, but that doesn’t mean as a society we have to play into it. Someone should teach Mr. Trump that just because he doesn’t like what he’s reading, that doesn’t mean it’s fake. No one is perfect.

Everyone makes mistakes. But this isn’t a mistake. I’m tired of society playing along with the president’s false claims.

We have the First Amendment for a reason.

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