True or False?

Reducing the opportunities in creating and spreading false news.

6 tips – keep this in mind when assessing information

In journalism there are the six classic questions What? When? Where? How? Who? and why? to be answered as truthfully as possible. The questions can be translated into concrete tips when assessing information with a source-critical filter.

  1. What?

What kind of information is this – are they personal opinions or facts? Are there any source references that go to places that confirm the claim?

  1. When?

How old is the information? Is it still relevant? When was the last post or update made?

  1. Where?

Where is the information published – on a private blog, as a post on social media, on a company website, on a media site? If the information is found on a media site – is there a responsible publisher for the site? A media site with responsible publisher has more credibility than a media site that does not have it.

Can you find the information through other sources? Information from only one source should be treated with great care.

  1. How?

How did you get the information? Does it come from a source that is reliable and has previously provided verified information?

  1. Who?

Who is behind the information? An authority, organization, company or researcher? Can you find the source of origin?

  1. Why?

Why is the information available? Does anyone want to spread opinions or information, spark debate or entertain? Is anyone looking to make money by, for example, clicking on an ad link? Who benefits from spreading the information? Think about how the message may have been designed to change your thinking and actions.

More tips

  • There are rarely simple solutions to complex problems. Anyone offering simple solutions should be carefully examined.
  • If the information seems to be “too good to be true” it is usually that.
  • Think before sharing! Many people trust their friends. If you share something that is not true on social media (ie pass it on to other readers, such as Twitter or Facebook) you not only spread the lie, you have also given it the weight and credibility of your friends by virtue of being you.

 

Source: MSB

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