What is “Fake News” and How Does It Impact Our Lives?

What is “fake news,” how does it affect our trust in media, and our perception of issues relevant to our daily lives?

While fake news is not a new phenomenon, recent events have heightened awareness of the prevalence of questionable media sources, leaving consumers to evaluate the veracity of information that is presented.

The deluge of information available in print, televised, and online media sources, including sites such as Twitter and Facebook, has also increased the level of critical analysis media consumers must use to evaluate those sources.

This deliberation will analyze the effect of fake news on traditional media outlets, the reasons and incentives for purveyors of “fake news,” and provide students with resources to strengthen their media literacy skills.

Objectives and Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate an understanding of vocabulary and concepts related to media literacy and what may qualify as real versus fake news
  • Students will learn about the origins and evolution of fake news in both American and European histories
  • Students will deliberate the roles of major media outlets, media consumers, social media companies, and institutions in countering the growth of fake news
  • Students will develop and sharpen their critical thinking skills so that they question the strength and authenticity of all media