Well then, hello again. We’ve raised $1,361 which will provide water to 40 people, quite the achievement I believe. Very proud of myself and my mates especially, it’s a great feeling being able to rely on your friends honestly. It’s Thursday anyway, tomorrow is Friday and I cannot fucking wait. I swear somebody added an extra day to the working week in 2020. I have thought it was Friday on Thursday for two weeks in a row now. I know I said I hate defeatists but I’m sure you can sympathise with the royal kick in the balls I got when I realised it was Thursday, both times.
So earlier on I saw a tweet saying that the suicide rate had increased by 200% since lockdown. Immediately I knew it was bullshit so I just ignored it completely, the Internet is strewn with fabricated statistics. Anyway, I then saw my friend, Dave Reilly, post this on his story.
Anyway this got my attention so I messaged Dave just talking about this and I figured maybe I’d just steal his thunder for my blog. So I’m gonna talk about this then, fake news. It’s insane to me that a few years ago nobody would even have reacted to the phrase ‘fake news’. Nobody would’ve known what you meant if you said that, thanks to The Donald, it’s now world renowned. But despite how much people took the piss out of Trump when he first started saying that he really has changed the world with that. For any of you thinking this is an ode to Donald Trump, it’s not but fake news started with him to be honest. Since this whole fiasco started it turns out that like 90% of what you read in the media is either doctored to suit a particular view or just entirely fabricated. If you hate Trump you can at least thank him for bringing fake news to the forefront, it’s forced big news outlets to be far stricter with the content they release. The problem doesn’t lie with big media though, it lies with social media, idiots and people with no concept of the effect fake news can have. Dave put it so right that I’m going to just copy and paste his message.
Dave: “Yeah proper bullshit , article from fucking June talking about this stat coming out on Twitter then , must have just resurfaced again but yet absolutely no evidence to it whatsoever
Yeah and they underestimate how much of an impact that has, half of Belfast all believing some bullshit cuz of a Twitter thread that no one called BS on
Like people thinking that the suicide rate has tripled, thats the kind of stuff that has people starting anti-lockdown riots”
I couldn’t have said it better myself, the usual ones are just as Dave described, old articles that have resurfaced and been shared by people who have no concept of critical or analytical thinking. The danger of people taking something false and running with it is frightening. Social media is so hot right now with everyone sitting in their houses and the fact that literally anyone seems to be able to just announce a statistic in a headline, tweet it out and it gains instant traction. I have honestly seen so many people share articles from a year or two ago and post it with a caption similar to ‘Fucking disgrace.’ That is somebody getting all wound up and irritated about a statistic or an article that is in no way relevant to the time. I vividly remember one person in particular, they’re a repeat offender, sharing an article from 2011 in 2018 and taking an actual political stance on a 7 year old article. This particular specimen belongs to the category of young people who like to think they understand politics but in reality they crawl out from under their rock every General or Presidential election and share a few Facebook statuses. I have a particular sort of distrust and dislike for the far left especially on social media but I encourage any revolutionaries to post their stuff to social media. The reason is that in truth people who are real Commies tend to actually have a genuine interest in politics and know what they stand for, much better than these part timers who think LGBT issues can decide an entire election but sure ya know yourself.
Look if there was ever anywhere to look for false information it’s the Internet. There’s few reasons, firstly, the anonymity of it – post an article, make some money, it’s found to be false, gets deleted. Now secondly, there’s no barrier to entry, anybody can do it if they want it costs literally nothing to tweet something false and lastly, the whole world is infected with clickbait, it’s pretty simple to understand – the revenue stream on the Internet comes in the form of ads, websites are paid per ad viewed usually so simply put: the more clicks you get, the more ads are viewed and the more money you make and it’s here we find one motive for fake news. Another motive is to do with political agenda. I’ll never forget in the 2017 General Election the Sun had a cartoon of Jeremy Corbyn in a bin on their front page the day of the election. How can that be legal? It might not even be legal to be honest, not as if the Sun gives a fuck. It baffles me that the Sun is Britain’s top selling newspaper, is it any fucking wonder the UK voted for Brexit?
*edit* The Sun was the best selling newspaper in Britain until June 2020 when it was overtaken by none other than the Daily Mail, even better.
I mean if that’s the quality of media that the Brits are consuming then God help us all. I remember a video essay I watched on a video by NowThis, the video was 48 seconds long and posted to their Facebook page. It was supposed to be a clip from one of Donald Trump’s press conferences. But as this guy who made this video revealed the original video was 12 minutes long and it’s not like they’d posted 48 consecutive seconds, it was literally cut and edited across like a 5 minute period to make him sound bad. NowThis just so happens to be left wing but this problem spans the entire Internet on both sides. It’s just sad because it makes people so bitter and angry at the world and each other and for what? A few clicks on a website?
So, that’s the producers of the fake news taken care of, how about we move onto the consumers? It’s all of us, guys, unless you see a video of something you can’t be sure it happened and even at that you still don’t know. There’s just so much misinformation in the world today that you have to question everything. It’s not like you can’t reference facts and statistics from the Internet, you can, you just need to fact check everything first because when you dig deeper you’ll usually find that if something sounds made up, it probably is. Just please stop sharing fucking articles without reading them, without researching the website or author and without thinking for a second things may not always be as they seem.