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Month: January 2017

‘Can You Hear Me?’ Scam Warning is probably fake news

‘Can You Hear Me?’ Scam Warning is probably fake news

Dozens of news outlets reported on a purported scam wherein fraudsters supposedly falsify charges by randomly calling people and asking ‘Can you hear me?’ Source: ‘Can You Hear Me?’ Scam Warning CBS News prompted the latest round of this story. As Snopes notes, no one can identify an actual victim of the purported scam. Of course, it is a good idea to say as little as possible to telemarketers. However, it might not be a great idea to share the…

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'Can You Hear Me?' Scam Warning is probably fake news

'Can You Hear Me?' Scam Warning is probably fake news

Dozens of news outlets reported on a purported scam wherein fraudsters supposedly falsify charges by randomly calling people and asking ‘Can you hear me?’ Source: ‘Can You Hear Me?’ Scam Warning CBS News prompted the latest round of this story. As Snopes notes, no one can identify an actual victim of the purported scam. Of course, it is a good idea to say as little as possible to telemarketers. However, it might not be a great idea to share the…

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“Leaving Social Media Could Save Your Sanity”

“Leaving Social Media Could Save Your Sanity”

Definitely a growing trend: “I’ve been screaming my opinions at the world via the internet for a solid decade now. Back in college, I discovered LiveJournal, which I filled with movie reviews, shoddy political analysis, and snark (which I directed at other people on LiveJournal). Then Facebook opened up! And Twitter! And Instagram! And you could link them. I have now spent a solid decade getting positive reinforcement and criticism — at least someone cares! — from strangers online. But…

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"Leaving Social Media Could Save Your Sanity"

"Leaving Social Media Could Save Your Sanity"

Definitely a growing trend: “I’ve been screaming my opinions at the world via the internet for a solid decade now. Back in college, I discovered LiveJournal, which I filled with movie reviews, shoddy political analysis, and snark (which I directed at other people on LiveJournal). Then Facebook opened up! And Twitter! And Instagram! And you could link them. I have now spent a solid decade getting positive reinforcement and criticism — at least someone cares! — from strangers online. But…

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“Fake news” targets those with preconceptions says study

“Fake news” targets those with preconceptions says study

Study finds it is doubtful that fake news changed vote outcomes. “It may be less that false information from dubious news sources is shaping their view of the world. Rather, some people (about 8 percent of the adult population, if we take the survey data at face value) are willing to believe anything that sounds plausible and fits their preconceptions about the heroes and villains in politics.” Source: Researchers Created Fake News. Here’s What They Found. – NYTimes.com The study…

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"Fake news" targets those with preconceptions says study

"Fake news" targets those with preconceptions says study

Study finds it is doubtful that fake news changed vote outcomes. “It may be less that false information from dubious news sources is shaping their view of the world. Rather, some people (about 8 percent of the adult population, if we take the survey data at face value) are willing to believe anything that sounds plausible and fits their preconceptions about the heroes and villains in politics.” Source: Researchers Created Fake News. Here’s What They Found. – NYTimes.com The study…

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Republican runs fake news web site

Republican runs fake news web site

Cam Harris, who fabricated viral stories about Hillary Clinton, did so while living in the home of his boss, a Republican member of the Maryland legislature. Source: Major Fake News Operation Tracked Back to Republican Operative Also see “Man behind ‘alt right’ fake news sites is registered Democrat” For all of these, making money is usually the motivation. Secondarily, they may be playing dirty politics, but as the 2nd link illustrates, even that meme is messed up when fake news…

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The first story is the one that is remembered, even if wrong

The first story is the one that is remembered, even if wrong

TL;DR Summary A media outlet ran a story with the headline “”Ben Carson admits fabricating West Point Scholarship“, based in part on muddled comments from Ben Carson that were not clear. The false version of the story was picked up by media and spread rapidly on social media. The story was eventually shown as incorrect and prominent media called the story a “lie”. But the damage was done. Propagandists know that the first message received by the target, even if…

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U.S. cities fall behind in wealth measure! :)

U.S. cities fall behind in wealth measure! :)

TL;DR Summary From a design standpoint, this poster is effective. Readers likely see it, quickly nod agreement, and then click Like and Share! It uses simple statements with an authority figure as the source of the quote. Some of the claims are false or misleading, but they all seem plausible. The poster works by making assertions (some of which are not true) and using an appeal to authority. The poster was designed to appeal to the preconceptions of its target…

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