Showing posts with label Faulty News. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Faulty News. Show all posts

November 25, 2016

Russia Started “The Fake News” This is Why…

The Washington Post has published an article which claims that a Russian propaganda campaign created and spread "fake news" articles in the lead up to the US presidential election.
Experts say Russia had teams of “human trolls” and thousands of botnets to help damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Some of the tactics allegedly used included releasing a number of hacked emails that embarrassed the Democrat candidate.

Here are five reasons why the independent research teams have come to this conclusion:
1. Vladimir Putin’s past

In 2011, Russian President Vladimir Putin was accused of rigging elections. Putin blamed Barack Obama – and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton – for initiating protests about the allegations.
The Russian then spoke about his desire to “break the Anglo-Saxon monopoly on the global information streams”.

A coincidence? Sufian Zhemukhov, a former Russian journalist conducting research at George Washington University, doesn’t seem to think so.
2. Russia’s army of botnets and trolls

According to the research, Russian sites used social media to amplify misleading stories already circulating, resulting in them becoming “trending” topics.
As a result, phony news got an abundance of coverage.

Researchers found that Russian botnets and trolls tweeted sensationalised information after Hillary Clinton fell ill at the 9/11 memorial event in New York.
3. Russia’s far-right views

Content from Russian sites was widely shared on US based websites pushing far-right conservative messages.
The research states that phony stories shared by Russian sites had an audience of 90,000 Facebook accounts and were read more than 8 million times.

One story shared stated that anti-Trump protesters paid thousands of dollars to participate in demonstrations, an allegation which was initially made by a self-described satirist and later repeated publicly by the Trump campaign.
“The way that this propaganda apparatus supported Trump was equivalent to some massive amount of a media buy,” said the executive director of PropOrNot, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to avoid being targeted by Russia’s legions of skilled hackers.

4. #CrookedHillary

Russian site Sputnik expressed support for Trump throughout the campaign, and even started using the hashtag #CrookedHillary.
5. They’re not new to propaganda campaigns

The Rand report traced the country’s generation of online propaganda work and found that they used the same tactics to shape international views on its military intervention in Syria. Russian propaganda operations also worked to promote the “Brexit” departure of Britain from the European Union.

You can read the full article here.Russia Started “The Fake News” This is Why

(Original source

November 23, 2016

Fake News Even Duping Internet Savvy Students-How to Detect it?

 Fake news. Learn how to find the truthful

Internet powerhouses have for days been scrambling to come up with a way to answer those who blame them for an onslaught of fake news and false information that permeates the Web and, some believe, may have affected the course of the presidential election.

Their most recent strategy, announced Friday by Facebook and Monday by Google, would stop grouping websites that peddle falsehoods alongside legitimate news outlets.

Teenagers are thought to be fluent in the ways of the Web. Yet students from middle school through college are easily duped by unreliable sources and deceptive advertisements peppered throughout news sites and social media feeds, according to a Stanford University study.

The study, which measures how teenagers assess information they encounter online, is the biggest of its kind, surveying more than 7,800 students. It may, scholars said, illuminate how shallow our society’s understanding is of information found on the Internet.

Sam Wineburg, a professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Education and lead author of the study, said even among college students, the “ability to discern truth from falsehood on the Internet is bleak.”

Asked to research the U.S. health care system, more than 40 percent of middle school students said they would use statistics from an online comment by “Joe Smith.” The statistics, which are false, did not cite a source or provide context. And yet less than half of the students rejected the information as patently unreliable. The vast majority of middle schoolers — 82 percent — also could not distinguish an advertisement masquerading as a news story, researchers found.

When presented with a big, colorful chart sponsored by the oil company Shell versus a screenshot of an article from the Atlantic, high school students overwhelmingly argued that Shell’s post was the more reliable of the two “because it provided more data and information” than the article did. Only about 15 percent of students noticed the paid post was sponsored by Shell and said the science article was the more trustworthy source.

This inability to evaluate information persists even after students are accepted to major colleges and universities — including Stanford, Wineburg said.

The “great majority” of college students tasked with evaluating information from the American College of Pediatricians, a conservative advocacy group that has been named a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center for its vehement opposition to women’s and LGBT rights, were unable to suss out the group’s bias, even when given the chance to independently check the group’s credentials. Some even cited the professional-looking website of the organization as reason to trust its pseudo-science.

“These issues are the new basic skills,” Wineburg said. “When we all consumed a printed newspaper that was vetted by people who produce the content, we could rely upon others for fact-checking, but that’s not the age we’re in.”
Students — along with many adults — are largely unable to discern truth from fiction because they have never been taught how, said academics. Even when a video or written article that looks trustworthy is labeled as “sponsored content,” people may not know what that means.

This gap in understanding has given rise to programs like the News Literacy Project, which brings journalists into classrooms to help students understand the difference between reliable and unreliable sources.
“There is simply no reason why this shouldn’t be a part of a high school curriculum,” said said Gabriel Kahn, a professor at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. “This is Civics 101 for the 21st century. It has massive implications for our democracy.”

In the wake of the 2016 election, many blamed social media for falsely equivocating real news with falsehoods. Fake news typically falls into one of two categories: those that seek to manipulate people, spread misinformation and sow mistrust of traditional media, and those that use sensational — and false — stories to attract enough readers to make money through advertising.

Last week, Google announced that it would no longer allow websites that peddle falsehoods as fact to use its online advertising services. Facebook has done the same. But social media experts have said it likely won’t do much to stop fake news and false information from spreading.
In the past several days, both companies have taken it a step further: Google and Facebook announced that they’ll stop labeling such sites as news.

Google, which on the top of its main search tab offers a list of articles under the header “In the news,” will change that title to “Top stories,” to remove the implication that they are all news items. Google’s “news” tab offers news stories that are vetted more closely than on its main page.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, meanwhile, presented a seven-point plan that includes fitting fake news with a warning label once it has been confirmed false.

“We’ve been working on this problem for a long time and we take this responsibility seriously,” Zuckerberg wrote in a post on his own Facebook page Friday, just days after he claimed it was “extremely unlikely” that fake news and hoax posts on social media had altered the election’s outcome. “Historically, we have relied on our community to help us understand what is fake and what is not.”

That might be part of the problem, experts said. Users may not know what’s real or not — especially when their main source of news is Facebook itself.

As manually I scan the internet for important and current news stories my readers would be interesting in, one of the main tell tale is *who is putting out the news. If you the reader don’t recognize the news site for what ever reason then you most *examine the site and see what other stories they have.  Are they *recent? Are they *serious? Do they have stories about *incredible things like reports of a famous person who’s dead and now there are reports someone saw them at the supermarket.
Pay attention to *the tittle. Are they *all caps? Does it makes sense in the way a *serious person and not a comedian would address the readers.

You can also see who is the *author or reporter writing the story. You can click on their *name or copy and paste into a search engine preferably *google it ( and make sure you are on the real by seeing that you are on a secure site and the big G in color appears at the beginning of the url on your browser window.  i.e;: G https  “s” is for secure. Those should be the only sites you visit.

You can also google the name of the site of you don’t recognize it. If you get other stories from them then you know they are established. My first rule of all Ive told you is to google the name of the site. It’s worked very well for me. I never had to pull a story for any reason since I went from blogger or commentator to publishing this blogging
Media site.

I hope these tips help you to spot fake news. In Facebook I know is a real problem to the point of being unfriended many times or blocked because I was trying to convey the news they were sharing were no news. When people share fake news as I told someone who was sharing something I no longer remember but I do remember to my shock that he messages me that he knew it was not true but that was not hurting anyone and he was looking for “likes.” Fake news are dangerous because it starts untrue rumors that can affect someone for real. I believe the election was tipped (to what degree I don’t know) by fake news that the pope or someone also important endorsed Trump or that Hillary was indicted and was going to jail. I was abhorred when Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook originally announced (they have changed their tuned even though they have not reversed their statements) fake news was not a real problem. Being the biggest Face book has been the problem!

Fake news is like having a plate of good nutritious food and having someone while you are looking away exchange it for junk food that will not sustain you but the way it was prepared might just make you real sick.


November 27, 2013

CBS Finally Suspends Lara Logan for the FAULTY Benghazi Report

Lara Logan
Lara Logan apologizes for the faulty 60 Minutes report on the 
Benghazi incident. (Courtesy of CBS.)
Finally, this afternoon, CBS suspended Lara Logan and producer Max McClellan after the network’s internal probe found serious problems in their 60 Minutes Benghazi report.
The report hit Logan for not knowing, or knowing and not caring, about key source Dylan Davies telling a different story to his employer and FBI; for not really substantiating her claims that Al Qaeda led the assault; and for her now-famous October 2012 speech that suggested she was far from objective on this issue.
Her boss, Jeffrey Fager, now says he needs to “make adjustments” at the show. But he did not say how long the pair would be suspended.
This added injury to insult as Logan had just been disinvited to host the Committee to Protect Journalists dinner tonight.
Summary of the findings by CBS’s Al Ortiz, courtesy of The Huffington Post, do not add much that we don’t already know, but perhaps those details exist in the full report. And many questions remain. Ace blogger “Digby” hits the mere “slap on the wrist” and points to other examples of Logan’s reporting-with-an-agenda. Ortiz:
• From the start, Lara Logan and her producing team were looking for a different angle to the story of the Benghazi attack. They believed they found it in the story of Dylan Davies, written under the pseudonym, “Morgan Jones.” It purported to be the first western eyewitness account of the attack. But Logan’s report went to air without “60 Minutes” knowing what Davies had told the F.B.I. and the State Department about his own activities and location on the night of the attack.
• The fact that the F.B.I. and the State Department had information that differed from the account Davies gave to “60 Minutes” was knowable before the piece aired. But the wider reporting resources of CBS News were not employed in an effort to confirm his account. It’s possible that reporters and producers with better access to inside F.B.I. sources could have found out that Davies had given varying and conflicting accounts of his story.
• Members of the “60 Minutes” reporting team conducted interviews with Davies and other individuals in his book, including the doctor who received and treated Ambassador Stevens at the Benghazi hospital. They went to Davies’ employer Blue Mountain, the State Department, the F.B.I. (which had interviewed Davies), and other government agencies to ask about their investigations into the attack. Logan and producer Max McClellan told me they found no reason to doubt Davies’ account and found no holes in his story. But the team did not sufficiently vet Davies’ account of his own actions and whereabouts that night
• Davies told “60 Minutes” that he had lied to his own employer that night about his location, telling Blue Mountain that he was staying at his villa, as his superior ordered him to do, but telling “60 Minutes” that he then defied that order and went to the compound. This crucial point—his admission that he had not told his employer the truth about his own actions—should have been a red flag in the editorial vetting process.
• After the story aired, The Washington Post reported the existence of a so-called “incident report” that had been prepared by Davies for Blue Mountain in which he reportedly said he spent most of the night at his villa, and had not gone to the hospital or the mission compound. Reached by phone, Davies told the “60 Minutes” team that he had not written the incident report, disavowed any knowledge of it, and insisted that the account he gave “60 Minutes” was word for word what he had told the F.B.I. Based on that information and the strong conviction expressed by the team about their story, Jeff Fager defended the story and the reporting to the press.
• On November 7, The New York Times informed Fager that the F.B.I.’s version of Davies’ story differed from what he had told “60 Minutes.” Within hours, CBS News was able to confirm that in the F.B.I.’s account of their interview, Davies was not at the hospital or the mission compound the night of the attack. “60 Minutes” announced that a correction would be made, that the broadcast had been misled, and that it was a mistake to include Davies in the story. Later a State Department source also told CBS News that Davies had stayed at his villa that night and had not witnessed the attack.
• Questions have been raised about the recent pictures from the compound which were displayed at the end of the report, including a picture of Ambassador Stevens’s schedule for the day after the attack. Video taken by the producer-cameraman whom the “60 Minutes” team sent to the Benghazi compound last month clearly shows that the pictures of the Technical Operations Center were authentic, including the picture of the schedule in the debris.
 • Questions have also been raised about the role of Al Qaeda in the attack since Logan declared in the report that Al Qaeda fighters had carried it out. Al Qaeda’s role is the subject of much disagreement and debate. While Logan had multiple sources and good reasons to have confidence in them, her assertions that Al Qaeda carried out the attack and controlled the hospital were not adequately attributed in her report.
• In October of 2012, one month before starting work on the Benghazi story, Logan made a speech in which she took a strong public position arguing that the US Government was misrepresenting the threat from Al Qaeda, and urging actions that the US should take in response to the Benghazi attack. From a CBS News Standards perspective, there is a conflict in taking a public position on the government’s handling of Benghazi and Al Qaeda, while continuing to report on the story.
• The book, written by Davies and a co-author, was published by Threshold Editions, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, part of the CBS Corporation. “60 Minutes” erred in not disclosing that connection in the segment.

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