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Fake news: What is it

Fake news is

Fake news is an expression often used to refer to fabricated news. This type of news, found in traditional news, social media or fake news websites, has no basis in fact, but is presented as being factually accurate (Wikipedia).

Fake news, misinformation and disinformation video

Social media and fake news

Categories of fake websites

There are four broad categories of fake news, according to Media Professor Melissa Zimdars (Merrimack College)

Category 1: Fake, false, or regularly misleading websites that are shared on Facebook and social media. Some of these websites may rely on “outrage” by using distorted headlines and decontextualized or dubious information in order to generate likes, shares, and profits. The Information may be entirely fabricated.

Category 2: Websites that may circulate misleading and/or potentially unreliable information. These websites may intentionally misinterpret facts or misrepresent data.

Category 3: Websites which sometimes use clickbait-y headlines and social media descriptions. The information may be accurate or partially accurate but use an alarmist title to get your attention.

Category 4: Satire/comedy sites, which can offer important critical commentary on politics and society, but have the potential to be shared as actual/literal news. This may be a critique on a topic.

Please note : No single topic fits in a single category, and some articles fit in more than one category.