fake news

At an event billed as a roundtable discussion about taxes in West Virginia, President Trump went off script Thursday afternoon, and notably repeated a claim about voter fraud that has repeatedly been proven false.

"In many places, like California, the same person votes many times — you've probably heard about that," Trump said. "They always like to say 'oh that's a conspiracy theory' — not a conspiracy theory folks. Millions and millions of people."

One company. One script. Many, many voices.

A video published by sports news site Deadspin over the weekend revealed dozens of TV anchors from Sinclair Broadcast Group reciting the same speech warning against "biased and false news."

It was the latest show of the vast reach of a company that owns local TV stations across the country and has long been criticized for pushing conservative coverage and commentary onto local airwaves.

Facebook is doing some soul-searching.

In a new commentary, the social media giant acknowledges the possibility that social media can have negative ramifications for democracy. This comes after repeated criticism that it didn't do enough to prevent the spread of fake news that had the potential to impact the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

French President Emmanuel Macron says he will push a new law aimed at clamping down on fake news, saying he hopes to have it in place by the end of the year.

Speaking at a news conference at the Elysee Palace in Paris on Wednesday, Macron said such a law was essential, especially during elections.

"The freedom of the press is not a special freedom, it is the highest expression of freedom," Macron said. "If we want to protect liberal democracies, we have to be strong and have clear rules." Adding that, "A law will follow in due course."

International influence campaigns have been around for centuries, but 2017 made clear how much they remain a part of daily life.

Through court documents, congressional testimony, press reports and other sources, Americans learned not only about the extent of the "active measures" — as they're known to intelligence officers — that Russia waged against the U.S. through the presidential election.

Which of these statements seems more trustworthy to you?

1) Americans are drowning in a tsunami of ignorance! There is a conspiracy at the highest levels to replace all knowledge with propaganda and disinformation.

2) A recent Stanford University report found that more than 80 percent of middle schoolers didn't understand that the phrase "sponsored content" meant "advertising."

Longtime conspiracy theorist and propagator Alex Jones has apologized to the Washington, D.C. pizzeria Comet Ping Pong and its owner James Alefantis for his show's role in promoting the false "pizzagate" conspiracy theory involving a child sex-abuse ring.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Hackers, fake news, conspiracy theories tweeted and retweeted. One takeaway from the election is that the internet isn't living up to the promise that it would revitalize the marketplace of ideas.

In the span of a single sentence, President Trump managed to flummox a nation.

"We've got to keep our country safe," Trump said at a campaign-style rally Saturday in Melbourne, Fla. "You look at what's happening in Germany, you look at what's happening last night in Sweden — Sweden, who would believe this?"

Swedes, in turn, answered Trump's question with a question of their own: "Wait — what?"

5 Ways Teachers Are Fighting Fake News

Feb 16, 2017

As the national attention to fake news and the debate over what to do about it continue, one place many are looking for solutions is in the classroom.

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