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Tips for Spotting Misinformation Online

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Spotting Misinformation Online

Tips for spotting misinformation online Last Friday marked International Fact-Checking Day — falling perhaps aptly on April 2, following the onslaught of misinformation that comes with April Fools’ Day.

In recognition of the day, Alexios Mantzarlis from the Google News Lab (and formerly of the International Fact-Checking Network, IFCN) offered up some handy tips and tricks for spotting online misinformation.

According to Mantzarlis, finding out more about the source of a piece of information can help with verification. He suggests searching for an alternative source by explicitly excluding the original web pages in order to get an unbiased opinion. 

“The [search] query would look something like this: ‘about youtube’,” he explains.

His next trip is to check whether images are being used in context by performing a reverse image search: “This will look for the picture to check if it has appeared online before, and in what context, so you can see if it has been altered from its original meaning.”

Mantzarlis further suggests looking for news coverage to see how different news outlets have reported on a topic or event or using Google’s Fact Check Explorer to see what reputable fact-checkers have had to say.
Article supplied by RMIT ABC Fact Check newsletter.

A brilliant weekly newsletter that is supported by funding from the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas and the International Fact-Checking Network.