The Web is a great tool for learning and for gathering knowledge, as we have previously discovered. However, alongside all of the legitimate information sits the lashings of misinformation, of unsubstantiated rumors, of satirical news stories, and of downright lies.
This isn’t a problem exclusive to the Web. And it existed long before the Internet was ever even conceived of. But while we expect newspapers to sensationalize or spin a story for their own benefit or belief, and for Fox News to feature different headlines than CNN, the Web has an infinite supply of sources, many of them unknown, feeding us facts. Or at least we assume they’re facts.
This makes it tricky to know who to trust. It’s time for us at MakeUseOf to seek your views.
This Week’s Question…
Do You Believe Everything You Read On The Web?
Do you believe everything you read on the Web? I would hope that your answer to that question is an unequivocal “No.” If you do take everything you read on the Web at face value, even if it sounds ridiculous, then we’d love to hear your reasons for doing so. Assuming you did answer negatively then the question can be expanded.
Justin recently wrote an article detailing four websites you should read before you head out to vote, primarily in the U.S. Presidential Election. Prospective politicians and their respective parties will say just about anything to get elected. Because getting elected is in many cases their ultimate quest. But truthfulness, or the lack of it, goes beyond politics (partly because we don’t do politics here at MakeUseOf).
Do you have any particular source you trust fully and rely on to tell the truth? Whether their main interest is world news, current affairs, or even technology? Which websites do you use to check facts or statements? Do you feel social networking sites – especially Twitter – are the main cause of the barrage of fake news and false information that tends to be wafted under our noses these days? Do you stall before passing on a story you have read online to other people, just in case it’s later disproved?
All comments will be digested to form conclusions in a follow-up post next week where we will detail what You Told Us.One reader will even win Comment Of The Week, which will be included in the follow-up post! What more motivation than that do you need to respond?
We Ask You is a weekly column dedicated to finding out the opinions of MakeUseOf readers. The questions asked are usually open-ended and likely to start a conversation. Some are opinion-based, while others see you sharing tips and advice, or advocating tools and apps to fellow MakeUseOf Readers. This column is nothing without you, as MakeUseOf is nothing without you.
Image Credit: Photosteve101