Fake news spreads faster than genital warts at Coachella and has significantly contributed to the division in our country. So, who’s to blame for this? Is it President Trump for his inability to tell the truth? Is it social media for providing a platform for fake news to spread? Or is it us, gullible Americans who are too lazy to fact check a story before sharing it? The truth is, it’s all of that and more. Here’s a look at who’s really to blame for all of this fake news.
The creator of Facebook became the target of blame for fake news after evidence surfaced that fake accounts and groups on the social media platform heavily influenced the 2016 presidential election. While Mark Zuckerberg didn’t personally create these accounts or publish any misinformation himself, he has been blamed along with Facebook for not having the proper measures in place to recognize fake accounts. It wasn’t until after Trump won the election that it was discovered that Russian groups spent $100k on pro-Trump Facebook ads leading Facebook to create more restrictions and transparency on any political ads. Facebook may be to blame for helping people spread fake news, but who’s behind creating it?
President Donald Trump
Americans expect the president to keep people in the dark when it comes to certain political issues, but Trump takes this to a whole new level. He lies about the lies he’s told. He lies about things no one has asked him about or even cares to know. He lies to his family, to his supporters, to the press, and even to himself. Trump may have created the expression “fake news,” but he’s the biggest producer of misinformation from the White House. Is he really to blame though if people are willing to believe every word out of his mouth?
Worse than creating fake news stories is those who spread them, and Fox News is certainly guilty of doing that. Not only do they spread the lies told by Trump and his officials, but they package them in a way so that viewers think it’s the truth. Right-wing or not, they’re not doing our country any favors.
A recent study showed that people over 65, known as the baby boomers, are seven times most likely to share fake news on Facebook. While it’s unknown why older people are more susceptible to nonsense they see on the social media platform, it likely has to do with the fact that they didn’t grow up using this kind of technology. News back then was simply factual. They don’t realize that the internet opens doors for satire, uneducated opinions, and deliberate fake news.
Trolls just love to create fake news stories and share them on social media for the sheer entertainment of seeing how many people fall for it. Also known as the scum of the internet, they can be dangerous if they have an agenda in mind. Exhibit A: The Russians helping Trump get elected by spreading fake news on Facebook.
Do you take humorous articles seriously? Do you share articles, memes, or information on social media before fact-checking them? Do you understand the difference between a reliable source and a not-so-reliable source? Can you tell the difference between a news piece and an opinion piece? If you answered no to any of these questions, then you are part of the problem.
That’s just my OPINION though, as this is an OPINION