Fake news a disaster. But how does one combat fake news? Well, we spoke about how each of us can each contribute to eradicating fake news as much as possible. We also spoke about an app that wants to do the same. Now, that process will hopefully be even stronger thanks to Fact Crescendo Sri Lanka.
Fact Crescendo Sri Lanka, a local independent arm of Fact Crescendo confirmed that they would be fact-checking all content on Facebook in Sri Lanka. In case you didn’t know, Fact Crescendo is an independent digital journalism initiative. Part of Crescendo Transcription Private Limited, Fact Crescendo aims to carry out unbiased fact-checking and provide readers with verified news and information.
Similar to other fact-checking partners of Facebook, Fact Crescendo Sri Lanka is certified by the IFCN or International Fact Checking Network. When Fact Crescendo Sri Lanka marks a story as false, it is shown lower in Facebook’s News Feed. This, in turn, means that the distribution of that news article is significantly reduced. Doing so means that the fake news is prevented from reaching other people who may unknowingly share it.
Rahul Namboori – Editorial Head of Fact Crescendo shared stated “We are excited to be expanding our services to Sri Lanka, we will work hard to debunk false news. Fact Crescendo is an independent, unbiased fact-checking organization that fact-checks suspicious news from social media and mainstream media and after an unbiased and transparent analysis of the facts is committed to get it corrected.”
What else can we do to prevent the surge of Fake News?
As we saw back in October last year, Fake News has the propensity to create a massive amount of trouble. A prime example is the WhatsApp message you may get from a relative or close friend. The content of the text might be distressing enough for you to pass onto someone else or multiple people without validating it first. In sending that message to others, you are in fact creating a new wave of Fake News that gets tougher to douse.
Facebook pages and groups are the next targets of Fake News. In some cases, Government officials were found to be sharing unverified information. This, in turn, creates waves of uneasiness amongst citizens simply because it was shared by Government official.
Some people might just share news as a joke or as an attempt to just cause unwanted trouble. So where ever you get information from, the vital step is to first verify the authenticity of the message before you go sharing it on WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter.
So yes, the efforts of Fact Crescendo Sri Lanka are most welcome. But on the other hand, it won’t amount to anything if we don’t take the initiative to first verify whatever news we get before sharing it. So the next time you think of forwarding that bit of “interesting” news on WhatsApp, Facebook or Twitter, make sure you think about what it is you’re sharing.
Take a minute or two to make sure it’s true. Call a friend or relative. Check other media outlets to see if something similar is true. If all else fails, just send a message to WatchDog asking them if the news is true.