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Fake or Fact?: Home

Curious about what makes some news "fake"? The library is here to help!

Types of fake news

There are four broad categories of fake news, according to media professor Melissa Zimdars of Merrimack College.

CATEGORY 1: Fake, false, or regularly misleading websites that are shared on Facebook and social media. Some of these websites may rely on “outrage” by using distorted headlines and decontextualized or dubious information in order to generate likes, shares, and profits.

CATEGORY 2: Websites that may circulate misleading and/or potentially unreliable information

CATEGORY 3: Websites which sometimes use clickbait-y headlines and social media descriptions

CATEGORY 4: Satire/comedy sites, which can offer important critical commentary on politics and society, but have the potential to be shared as actual/literal news

No single topic falls under a single category - for example, false or misleading medical news may be entirely fabricated (Category 1), may intentionally misinterpret facts or misrepresent data (Category 2), may be accurate or partially accurate but use an alarmist title to get your attention (Category 3) or may be a critique on modern medical practice (Category 4.)  Some articles fall under more than one category.  It is up to you to do the legwork to make sure your information is good.

What is fake?

Fake News is a Real Problem

Infographic: Fake News Is A Real Problem | Statista
You will find more statistics at Statista

How to spot fake news

Caution

Have some more questions?

Beth Hoppe's picture
Beth Hoppe
Contact:
H-L Library
111A
207-725-3260

Get Informed

Bowdoin College Library
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