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False News hardly Fade Away

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Avatar for Sylv_Sylv
Written by   22
3 months ago

The deliberate spread of false information with the intention of harming someone's reputation, making people think otherwise about what is true, motivating the public to rebel against the government, and, most distressingly, wreaking havoc in society is referred to as fake news.

Fake news is not a new phenomenon in the world. It has been there even before social media came to be. With the existence of man came fake news. Many people engage in it for a variety of reasons, which can be divided into two categories. The first is disinformation, which is false information that is purposefully created and spread in order to influence public opinion on a subject or to conceal the truth.

The second type of misinformation is false or inaccurate information that is created or spread by mistake or unconsciously.

In my country, people who spread disinformation are popularly referred to as “radio without battery”. Even though social media has expanded the operation of the ‘radio without battery’ through its more extensive reach, speed, and low costs, word of mouth continues to be a fundamental way in which falsehoods are spread in the country, particularly in rural areas. During the time when the first cases of Ebola virus was reported, series of false news about how to prevent the the virus surfaced and spread throughout the country. The false news started in the rural areas was that the only way to avoid being infected with Ebola was by pouring 50cl salt in one or two cups of water and drinking it. This fake news spread like wildfire and soon entered social media. Many families were reported to have lost their lives after consuming this mixture. It was after lots of deaths were reported that people began to debunk this fake news.

Fake news when spread are hard to erase. The existence of social media has helped to increase the damaging effects. Just a phone call or even a tweet and a recently generated fake news will be spread throughout the world. Other news aimed at suppressing the fake news will usually have little or no effect. Can you imagine that up till today, the fake news about immunization that was generated way before I was born has not yet been erased. When I was still in elementary school, immunization workers would always come to schools to immunize us but we make sure to run away from them because our parents had told us that immunization causes a strange sickness without cure. Even now that I am an adults, I still see lots of parents that refuse to immunize their children because they still hold on to such false news.

Sometimes I think that the reason why fake news are more believable is because the spreaders are so crafty that they make sure to give you instances that are hard to disprove if you are uninformed.

Fake news has done more harm and no good to the society. Imagine the panic the Americans were put into when on 10 August 1919 the Washington Herald ran the headline: ‘Planets Moving Into Huge Danger Zone; Earth Will Stagger From Mighty Shock’. Explosion of flaming gases leaping hundreds of thousands of miles out into space was predicted as well as lightening, hurricanes and great earthquakes that would take place for four days. People who read that paper were thrown in distress. That is what fake news can do. It can make people commit suicide just to evade the destruction predicted on them. How would you feel being the reason for chaos and deaths just because you couldn't keep your mouth shut.

Some people engage in spreading fake news because they want people to pay them attention but there are better ways to get that attention. Do something industrious and the attention would be all yours.

Do not be a 'radio without battery'. Do not be know as a spreader of fake news, else you will turn untrustworthy in any society you find yourself.

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Avatar for Sylv_Sylv
Written by   22
3 months ago
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Comments

Yes social media is playing a major role in triggering the false news and it is really an accurate term " radio without battery "

$ 0.01
3 months ago

False news is something we can't even conquer because it's been in existence before most of us. It's part of our living.

I was among that that had bathe with water mixed with salt to cure ebola🤣

$ 0.00
3 months ago

I also bathed with and drank salt water. I just thank God I didn't drink too much

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3 months ago

This is why I decided not to believe any news about someone on social unless the information is really confirmed by the authorities. This is because they try to tanish one’s image by deliberately spreading false rumors about the person

$ 0.01
3 months ago

People get defamed everyday on social media

$ 0.00
3 months ago

Yeah So true @Sylv_Sylv

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3 months ago

This is one of the reasons I tend to stay of social media these days. Too much fake news and conspiracy your head will start to ache.

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3 months ago

All we can do is filter the right ones to believe

$ 0.00
3 months ago

Radio without battery? You must be a Nigerian too😊 I think spreading misinformation should be a criminal offense punishable by the law. Information is needed to take action, provoking people to take action based on misinformation could result in casualties, literal casualties.

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3 months ago

It is a criminal law but I'm not sure what the punishment is. I be Nigerian pikin

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3 months ago

Even if it is, definitely isn't an implemented law. Nice to meet you. I am a Nigerian too living in Kaduna.

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3 months ago