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FNDS 1501: Physics for 21st Century Citizens

News Media Evaluation Tools

These resources look at the validity of the information you read in the news though an examination of media bias, a deep dive into misinformation, disinformation, and fake news. Even reliable news sources can get information wrong. Always think critically about what you're reading, check for bias in representation of information, and fact check.

  • Media Bias Rating - This media bias rating system has rated nearly 600 media outlets on a 5 point scale. They label media outlets as Left, Lean Left, Center, Lean Right, and Right. Check out the example below.
  • - "We monitor the factual accuracy of what is said by major U.S. political players in the form of TV ads, debates, speeches, interviews and news releases. Our goal is to apply the best practices of both journalism and scholarship, and to increase public knowledge and understanding," (Mission Statement).
  • - "Snopes got its start in 1994, investigating urban legends, hoaxes, and folklore. Founder David Mikkelson, later joined by his wife, was publishing online before most people were connected to the internet. As demand for reliable fact checks grew, so did Snopes. Now it’s the oldest and largest fact-checking site online, widely regarded by journalists, folklorists, and readers as an invaluable research companion," (About Us).

What Is Misinformation and Fake News?

Fake News

“False stories that appear to be news, spread on the internet or using other media, usually created to influence political views or as a joke.” -Cambridge Dictionary

Misinformation and Disinformation

“The action of misinforming someone; the condition of being misinformed.”

“The dissemination of deliberately false information, esp. when supplied by a government or its agent to a foreign power or to the media, with the intention of influencing the policies or opinions of those who receive it; false information so supplied.” -Oxford English Dictionary

The videos below will give you a quick introduction into misinformation and fake news.

For more in depth information on fake news and misinformation, please check out the library's Mis and Dis and Fake Information Guide. That guide will give you clear definitions, fact checking resources beyond the ones listed above, and a history of misinformation.

How Misinformation Spreads

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