There is zero doubt in anyone’s mind that many websites have sprung up in recent years who earn a fortune with dramatic headlines. The headlines of “POPE ENDORSES TRUMP,” “ATTORNEY GENERAL TO INDICT HILLARY TOMORROW,” and many more have led to Facebook now cracking down on fake news stories.
According to an article in Business Insider, after a meeting between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg and Donald Trump, Mr. Z has decided to begin having “The News Feed” on Facebook be monitored by several “Fact Checking” organizations.
To start, I have several problems with this entire “Big Brother” thing of tracking our news, no matter the origins.
Have we in America really become so entirely inept that we cannot figure out the real news from the fake news? Has our society been dumbed down to the point that we have to be “FED” our news through filters? When a website has a .co (that is dot co) on the end, it should be readily easy to figure out that this might not be a reputable site. When a story has very inflammatory headlines, it is usually a safe bet that the article is probably “click-bait” propaganda.
Once upon a time in this nation, the real news arrived every morning on the front porch. I knew that I could walk out to my porch and my morning paper greeted me with factual headlines. If I wanted gossip, I could hit the checkout line at my grocery store for a fresh new copy of the National Enquirer. As I recall, “The Globe” was one that had aliens abducting Chelsea Clinton for medical experimenting. The Secret Service tried to save her as she played on the south lawn of the White House, but the aliens were just too fast as the beamed the poor child aboard the mothership.
The problem is; the mainstream media reports the truth in 99% of the cases, but what they are doing is twisting the truth to fit the narrative the station or network owner has. If the station owner is a Democrat and this happens to be Channel 13 in Des Moines, Iowa, then you can bet the slant will favor Democrats. The media is not “outright” lying in most cases, they are doing things such as holding back the entire story. IE; On election night, most networks did everything in their power to NOT declare Donald Trump the winner, until the last possible moment. Were they lying to us, no, they just withheld what we all wanted to hear until they could not hold back any longer.
One example is “Drudge Report.com.” Drudge is arguably one of the biggest websites on the entire Internet. Matt Drudge has hundreds of millions of visitors a month. His site claims over 1 billion visitors last year and the site is still growing. Here is one problem, there is a counter site that is named “Drudge Retort.com.” This site is not necessarily a news site but a counter to the conservative site owned by Drudge himself. In Matt Drudge’s defense, he is not an opinion site, but he list headline links that send you to NBC, CNN, Fox, etc. for the actual story.
To prove once again how bad of a problem this is, this headline was just on my Facebook news feed;
MICHELLE OBAMA DEMANDS AMERICANS PAY UP TO GIVE HER MOM A CUSHY $160K PENSION- It is from a website named http://americannews88.com/.
While the right screams fake news, remember they were not the first. How many fake news stories have we read over the past 8-years about Barack Obama? How many times did I read that “Next Week Obama is Declaring Martial Law”? How many articles were written about Obama coming for our guns? Then, of course, we had Obama heading up the New World Order who were sending in the United Nations Troops to subdue America. If there is any equality, the left had a valid argument for most of the Obama administration.
The part of the Facebook moderation changes that do frighten me to some degree is; The four companies who are going to be the fact check mechanism for Facebook. According to Business Insider, Snopes, and ABC News Fact Check will be two of the companies who will be deciding if news articles in the Facebook feed can be read or deleted.
For myself personally, this can pose a problem. We all know how liberal ABC is. What happens if Facebook sends over a story that ABC doesn’t much care for because it is either to much hype for the President or it is too critical of the Democrats in the House of Representatives? Will ABC actually be unbiased? Most people seem to think that SNOPES is down the center and objective. However, according to The Daily Caller, Snopes is more than just a little bit liberal.
Facebook for today’s millennials has become one of the primary sources for their news, and it is growing in popularity for that purpose. With Facebook now monitoring news while being one of the largest news outlets on the planet, we can only hope they do play fair.