A post by Huffington Post has been circulating, and the headline drags you in: Bernie Sanders could replace President Trump with little known loophole. I am sure many of our readers saw it yesterday. Of course that isn’t true, and an informed person knows that, but what about the people who don’t know as much about government?
These types of stories circulate the internet daily, and with all the civil unrest going on, we need to be more careful about what we share.
Below are some useful tips:
Here is exactly what we need to do to save our great society. The information here is what we’ve all been waiting for. By doing this we can make Bernie the president on Inauguration day rather than President-elect Donald Trump.
Actually, no we can’t. There is no loophole that allows a random person to assume the office of president. That’s pretty basic common sense but yet you clicked or even shared this article anyway. Now that right there is the real point of this post…
1. Read first. Then share. I myself am guilty of basing comments or even clicking share based on the headline. This is the worst thing any of us could do. Stop being lazy.
2. Check the source (and their sources). In the age of new media true and valid information comes from non-traditional sources but so does a lot of garbage. Any article that posts facts, figures or quotes should provide a source for that information. If there is no backup for their claims, move on.
3. Watch out for recycled stories. One thing that seems to be feeding into the misinformation problem is when old stories are being presented as happening now. Check the date on the story before you read on. You’ll be shocked to see how many are from another time and aren’t applicable to the current event you thought they were talking about.
4. If you care about facts, ignore the blatantly slanted. Having a slant or taking a position on a story is not wrong in itself. What is wrong is when these ideas are taken as unbiased fact. You can avoid all of this by simply avoiding those sites to start with. Any website with the words: Conservative, Liberal, Democrat, Republican, etc. in the title are just advertising how slanted they are. That’s ok if you choose to live in your side’s bubble but please don’t have any delusions that these stories reflect the whole picture.
5. Google it. God (and Sergey) gave us Google for a reason. If you see a story that’s unbelievable or has no sources or even if it does, verify. See if the same facts are reported across multiple outlets. See if anyone disputes these facts. Read these pieces and then make up your mind.
These are some simple steps that we as a society can take. With all the misinformation being shared, we can do our part in making sense of it all.