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From the Blog

The dangers of fake news

05. 04. 2022

We love the media here at Clearbox. It's at the centre of everything we do.

We're highly exposed to all the great things happening in the media, but that also means we're aware of fake news too. Amy on our team is really passionate about good, honest and fair news and she's written some words about the dangers of fake news and how you can stay away from it.

We spend our days flicking through national, regional and local newspapers, scrolling online news outlets, and discussing the latest headlines in the UK and beyond. One member of our team loves celebrity gossip, there’s always someone around who knows the ins-and-outs of the lives of every influencer, and pretty much all of us churn through podcasts like they’re going out of fashion.

Our work depends on the media. We want our clients to been seen and heard in the very best publications, which means we commit ourselves to knowing the happenings of their specific industries and building excellent relationships with the journalists we speak to about their stories on a regular basis. We want to share our clients’ good news far and wide, and we commend the work that journalists do to keep communities up-to-date with the happenings in their area.

As we’re all aware, it’s become incredibly hard to avoid the news in the contemporary age. A quick swipe right on our iPhones reveals the day’s ‘Top Stories’, and we have access to any information we want via a quick Google search or by looking out for content that agrees with our view of the world. Unfortunately, that means that it’s just as easy to stumble into ‘fake news’ or rumours, and if you aren’t astute enough to clock it, believing what you’ve been told can be extremely dangerous.

I recently watched Louis Theroux’s Forbidden America: Extreme and Online and it got me thinking about the profound influence the media we consume has on us. What we choose to listen to, watch, or read has the power to shape our worldview and form our opinions on both the trivial and the pivotal. That’s why it’s so important that we monitor our media consumption and check in with ourselves as to whether what we’re digesting is building us up or tearing us down.

Right now, I’m in awe of the BBC team reporting live updates on the War in Ukraine. Goodness knows how many people besides those mentioned in the byline are working 24/7 to keep correspondence going. We’re all aware of the big names like Clive Myers and Lyse Doucet doing incredible jobs reporting on the ground, but there are so many others making sure their broadcasts reach the audience in real-time, and there’s another team working round the clock to verify video sources and reports coming from all corners of the internet.

The BBC recently posted this article debunking false claims that the War in Ukraine has been staged. Fake news really is everywhere. With every world event or large-scale news story comes a barrage of unverified content and claims that do the rounds on social media and suck in the susceptible (that’s not to say that any of us are immune!). As we look on horrified at the ongoing media censorship taking place in Russia, the reality of the power of the media becomes all too prescient.

If you want to believe something, you can most likely find content on the internet to back up your rationale - it’s fascinating. Media is at once incredible for keeping us informed and providing factual information on events, and also easily skewed or pushed to carry some kind of agenda. I’m not going to tell you what to consume, but as we read what we read and search for what we search for, let’s be on guard our against the fake, the incorrect, and the downright dangerous. Be careful out there.

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