The coverage of Fake News is currently growing strongly. Whether in local and national weekly newspapers or on television – the reports are accumulating everywhere. The most popular medium for these false messages however is still Facebook.
We will show the (quite worrying) effects of the current fake news trends and explain what you can do about it.
What is Fake News?
The umbrella term “Fake News” has been coined recently. It basically means misinformation or untruths spread across multiple platforms and media. And the most popular of these is of course the social networks: Facebook and Twitter emerged. Through these, the authors can achieve an almost unlimited range for their reports, while acting under a cover name completely anonymously. Now the question remains, where do these messages originate from? The hunt for confirmation in the form of likes and commentaries on Facebook, has developed into a kind of popular sport in recent years. Who manages to generate the most Likes, from the most people is the goal. The Fake News is not subject to any safeguarding. So news about fake missing children or postings on the alleged death of Michael Schumacher is published. And of course, false competitions are still popular, where a BMW or X-Box will supposedly be raffled.
Facebook Fake: Consequences of false messages
In May 2016, a study by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) revealed that palm oil, a constituent of various food and cosmetic products, could be carcinogenic. Then there was the message on Facebook that a well-known supermarket chain in South Tyrol have taken the popular Nutella off their shelves. Such messages mean that people may steer away from the products that are being falsely reported. This has an adverse effect on the sales of products. This principle can also be specifically targeted at other products or services.
Fake News: Trump’s Presidential election promoted by Russia?
The discussion about Donald Trump’s election to the US president is particularly highly charged. They said that Trump received the necessary votes for the victory only by means of a deliberate falsification by the Russian government. Trump announced that he would take action against the Fake News. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO, explained that a reporting function for false notifications on Facebook is in progress.
It also hides bad links behind a supposed donation call (or similar), which infects the readers’ computers with viruses.