I agonize sometimes when I see blatant falsehoods on Facebook Memes. I have seen them on both the conservative and liberal memes. But let’s face it…trying to distill complex issues and opinions into a phrase or two is impossible…and ultimately hurtful. Throwing half truths and insults at each other is what the internet has created. It is why I have blocked many sites and try to share only humorous and inspirational memes . I DID say that I would post more in-depth articles of interest from time to time. This article covers an issue dear to my heart….ferreting out internet hoaxes. In it Silverman says. “When we spot hoaxes, we should play a role in calling it out.”. He was talking about the organization he works for….but I think we need to all play a part in keeping truth and respectful discussion alive. It is a tough job…but we ALL have to do it.
“Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it,” Jonathan Swift once wrote. BuzzFeed wants to tighten up the race.
Ask any political fact-checker how hard it is for the truth to overtake the bogus campaign trail claim. The shelf life of poppycock is depressingly long.
“There have always been hoaxes and rumors, but they are much more common in today’s world,” Silverman says. “The false stuff gets traction. It contributes to stereotypes and influences what we think. If we’re not knocking it down, it contributes to a more fractious society.”
He says the mission is complicated by the fact that people just don’t seem to share the corrective article nearly as much as the splashy but incorrect original story. “Hoaxes are better crafted to share,” he says. “Debunkers are seen as spoilsports.”
[Silverman] noticed that fake news was starting to emerge, “and social media was throwing gasoline on it.”