Facebook is the New CNN

62 percent of Americans rely on Facebook as their news source, according to neimanlab.org. It is understandable why, as Facebook is real-time and spreads information quickly. It is also convenient, as it is available all day whenever someone chooses to log in. Facebook has breaking news, and anyone can read it at their convenience. However, the most convenient option is not always the best.

The problem with using social media sites like Facebook and Twitter as news sources is that they do not always provide accurate information. (Some may argue that televised news and print media don’t always provide the most accurate information either, but that is not the purpose of this article.) Anyone can concoct a phony story, post it on a website and share it on Facebook. Because Facebook articles are so easy to share, this fake article can spread like wildfire.

Take WNDR for instance. Bizarre and untrue articles are shared off this site daily, although they are obviously exagggerated. Two articles are seen below. Although these are obviously not true, people still share them.

Social media is particularly prevalent during elections. Take the Tweets below for instance. Donald Trump uses Twitter to sway people to vote for Conservative candidates and to degrade Democratic candidates.

Donald Trump posted frequently during the recent House and Senate election.

Are all the claims President Trump makes true? Probably not in the least, but degradation of one’s opponent is ever popular in politics.

News can easily be skewed on social media. Take the video below for instance. Sarah Sanders said that Jim Acosta is bad, for lack of a better world, because an intern tried to grab the microphone from him while he was talking.

The original video was edited to make it look like he was being more agressive.

The following guidelines for spotting a fake news article on Facebook are below:

However, sometimes articles thought to be outlandish are actually true, like the atticle below:

I laughed out loud when I saw this article.

The article above, posted on Facebook, elicited several views. Although the majority of social media articles are “fake news”, a few are both interesting and true.

By being informed about current events and the trustworthiness of the news source of the articles, people can deter the spread of false news articles. Knowing how to spot legitimate and illegitimate articles on social media can ensure you’re getting accurate information. Most articles are fake, but some are trustworthy and true.