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How to help kids navigate fake news and misinformation online

How to help kids navigate fake news and misinformation online Back

Excerpt taken from TheConversation.com 
Young people get a huge amount of their news from social media feeds, where false, exaggerated or sponsored content is often prevalent. With the right tools, caregivers can give kids the knowledge they need to assess credible information for themselves.

Being able to identify the trustworthiness of information is an important concern for everyone. Yet the sheer volume of material online and the speed at which it travels has made this an increasingly challenging task. Platforms like Twitter and Facebook provide a loudspeaker to anyone who can attract followers, no matter what their message or content.

Fake news has the power to normalise prejudices, to dictate us-versus-them mentalities and even, in extreme cases, to justify and encourageviolence.

We have become obsessed with getting kids off their devices at the expense of developing their understanding of the online world. This is not about surveillance, but rather about having open conversations that empower children to understand and assess the usefulness of information for themselves.

Helpful tips provided in the article include: 
  • Who made this post?
  • Who do they want to view the post?
  • Who benefits from this post and/or who might be harmed by it?
  • Has any information been left out of the post that might be important?
  • Is a reliable source (like a mainstream news outlet) reporting the same news? If they’re not, it doesn’t mean it’s not true, but it does mean you should dig deeper.
  • Is the post low-quality, possibly containing bold claims with no sources and lots of spelling or grammatical errors?
  • Does the post use sensationalist imagery? Women in sexy clothing are popular clickbait for unreliable content.
  • Are you shocked, angry or overjoyed by the post? Fake news often strives to provoke a reaction, and if you’re having an intense emotional response then it could be a clue the report isn’t balanced or accurate.
  • How is the story structured and what kind of proof does it offer? If it merely repeats accusations against the people involved in an incident without further reporting, for example, there’s probably a better version of the story out there from a more reliable news source.

Read the rest of this article here: https://theconversation.com/how-to-help-kids-navigate-fake-news-and-misinformation-online-79342?sa=pg1&sq=How+to+help+kids+navigate+fake+news+and+misinformation+online&sr=1