What is Fake News?

Fake news is not news you disagree with.

"Fake news" is "fabricated information that mimics news media content in form but not in organizational process or intent. Fake-news outlets, in turn, lack the news media's editorial norms and processes for ensuring the accuracy and credibility of information. Fake news overlaps with other information disorders, such as misinformation (false or misleading information) and disinformation (false information that is purposely spread to deceive people)." [David M. J. Lazer, et al., "The Science of Fake News," Science 09 Mar 2018: Vol. 359, Issue 6380, pp. 1094-1096.].

What You Can Do about Fake News, Misinformation, and Disinformatiion

  • Learn to recognize false news stories. Be curious and actively investigate what you read and hear.
  • Use news sources that are accountable for their content and that follow journalistic ethics and standards.
  • Use care before sharing news content with others on social media. Pause and reflect on news and information that arouses strong emotions, positive or negative.
  • Learn to recognize your own biases and compensate for them.
  • Learn about your rights and responsibilities as a digital citizen: MLA Guide to Digital Literacy (2nd edition, 2022).