The “Fake News” Debacle

By Gus Nodal, Senior Account Executive

“Fake news” and “alternative facts” are catchphrases being tossed around and many people are left feeling like they don’t know what to believe anymore. For some, it is easy to hear “news is fake” over and over and start believing it.

It is true that fake news exists. There are sites that proliferate false information and deceive their readers by making themselves appear to be legitimate news sources. That alone is a huge problem, but what is more disturbing is when well-established news sources like The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and CNN are being branded as fake news by certain individuals in our government.

While those and other well-established news sources may appear biased in their coverage and opinions at times, they do follow basic reporting standards. They have built their image on public trust for years and are held to a standard of reporting accurate information, unlike fake news sites.

Considering the gravity of these accusations, now more than ever, we need brave and reliable journalists to be the overseers of those at the top. Journalists and media outlets need to expose the truth and not worry about being called-out for telling the truth, regardless of whether certain people do not like the outcome.

This irresponsible rhetoric discredits legitimate news and in certain instanced misleads less news-savvy individuals into believing that credible news outlets are “fake news.” It is everyone’s responsibility to look beyond what they initially read, source-out several news outlets on any specific news topic and not just give into the surface-level statements that are found online.

Here is what some journalists had to say about the “fake news” situation:

“It is crazy what we are watching every day, it is absolutely crazy. He [the President] keeps repeating ridiculous throwaway [fake news] lines that are not true at all…” – Shepard Smith, FOX News

“He [the President] call us fake news for stories that they do not like. Are we fake news, Kellyanne? Is CNN fake news?” – Jake Tapper, CNN

“One of the most shocking things to me is you actually have people with college degrees, who read these fake news stories and these conspiracy theories, and then call all of us up [asking] ‘Is this true?” – Joe Scarborough, MSNBC

How do you think we should counter fake news? Leave a comment below or email me [email protected].

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4 Comments

  1. Gregory Bortkiewicz Reply

    Good to see FOX News standing up for CNN – it’s essential that all media band together against this regime. Cheers Gus

  2. David Cumpston Reply

    Simply put, the notions of fake news and alternative facts make my stomach turn. Never in my 20-year career have I felt as though the communications industry is as threatened as it is today. We must all do our part to remain educated and vigilant about the events happening around us – to ensure this pillar of our democracy will withstand the pressures against it. Only time will tell what the ultimate outcome will be, so I’ll remain hopeful that the most sensible minds will prevail.
    – David C.

  3. David Landis Reply

    Gus, great blog.
    The best way to counter “fake news” is to adhere to journalistic standards and critical thinking. One should always question the veracity of any information and substantiate it with several sources. And I would trust vetted news sources with solid editorial oversight (like the New York Times) before I believe something on social media or a tweet from one individual. One thing’s for sure: if Kelly Anne Conway says it, it’s almost assuredly false. Cheers, David

  4. Sean Dowdall Reply

    Many people appear to be confused by news versus opinion. Broadcast (pundit shows) and online have blurred the lines more than print. That, along with an occasional news reporting error, has given a lot of people a sense of doubt or distrust – how unfortunate. Instead, they should be savvier about how they consume news. I like to dig for facts, look at multiple sources and use a critical review of what I see and hear.