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Here’s How To Fact Check The Information You Get Online

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Jan. 3 2020, Published 2:54 a.m. ET

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Although social media and other news outlets help provide useful and important information, the problem is that it also becomes a huge source of disinformation; people end up getting confused about the truth because some outlets distort reality. The rapid spread of fake news is also due to the easy access to various sites online. Since these sites don’t have to worry about their credibility or reputation, they don’t mind spreading fake information in order to attract readers.

If you’re on the receiving end, you have to be cautious about what you’re seeing and reading online. You need to make sure that you obtain the correct information. Don’t allow these sites to fool you and make you believe about something that has no foundation in reality at all. It’s true, especially for issues relevant to the environment.

For example, the reason why some people deny the existence of climate change isn’t because they have a deeply held belief in it. The truth is that they keep listening to propaganda sites telling them lies over and over again.

Eventually, they can no longer distinguish lies from truths. Therefore, you can’t allow these people to succeed. These are some things you need to do if you see information online.

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Triangulate The Information

fact check sources

If you read something dubious in one source, you have to check other sources in order to be certain that the information is correct. Otherwise, you need to keep doing verification. Factual information will remain a fact regardless of the source.

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Differentiate News From Opinion

You also have to understand that news is different from opinion. There are news sections in newspapers, and there are editorial pages too. The opinion of the journalist or Editor writing those articles may or may not be true, but the person is solely responsible for such an opinion. The same thing is true on television. There are news programs delivering straight news, while others are purely opinionated. You can have an open mind, but you can’t automatically accept an opinion to be factual.

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Your Personal Beliefs Appearing In The “News” Isn’t Necessarily True

Another problem that traps many people is the idea that when they hear someone confirming their theory or idea about a certain issue, it’s correct. For instance, if you have always believed that climate change isn’t real, and you hear an opinion host saying your belief is correct, it doesn’t mean both of you are right. You still have to verify whatever information you obtain.

The reason why it’s important is that you might end up doing things which are damaging to yourself and the environment because you believe in something that has no basis in reality. You might stop protecting the environment or doing positive things at home like partnering with a company that provides service for junk removal in Atlanta for your trash, simply because someone told you climate change isn’t real.

We have already seen the power of fake news, especially in twisting election results, and hampering democracy in general. We have to be responsible for spreading factual information.

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