You might have heard of the term fake news? Yes, you heard it from Donald Trump. While the definition of fake news in Trump’s understanding might refer to any news not meeting his standards and expectations, the real term of fake news came into being in the year 2016.
It might be hard to believe that this term, that is so widely used today, was just invented three years ago. It was not even heard of before that. The term fake news gained popularity during the US elections of 2016. Fake news generally referred to the widespread of false information on the internet in the year 2016, regarding many political entities. Facebook was the mostly used social media platform to spread this fake news. Apparently, millions of people were influenced by that widespread of fake news. It is also widely believed that the result of the US election 2016 was manipulated by the fake news.
What Is Fake News?
According to researchers, fake news is any piece of information that is false and fabricated that is intentionally made to confuse and manipulate the general public. The usual way of disseminating fake news is through social media, and websites are specially made to widespread the fake news to as many people as possible. However, researchers also claim that fake news is not as dangerous as previously assumed. You can also get anything negative removed from the internet with the help of the removify service. This means that any fake news, once detected, can be removed immediately.
Effects of Fake News On US Presidential Elections
It is believed that the result of the 2016 presidential election were cause and generated by the fake news. Fake news had a huge role to play in the US presidential elections. Many fake articles along with fake pictures were posted on social media. According to statistics, Facebook was the number one platform that had the most numbers of shares of fake news. Even the CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg admitted the widespread of fake news and its effects on elections in the senate committee by saying:
“it’s clear now that we didn’t do enough to prevent these tools from being used for harm as well. That goes for fake news, foreign interference in elections, and hate speech, as well as developers and data privacy. We didn’t take a broad enough view of our responsibility, and that was a big mistake”.
It has been confirmed that more than one-quarter of people eligible to vote visited the websites that were giving out fake news. People saw both types of fake news that supported Hillary and Trump. Although there was fake news prevalent, twenty posts containing fake news had more than a million engagements. It is evident from these stats that how broad did the fake news reach. Millions of people read and viewed these stories which might have altered their voting decisions.