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20%-40% of partisan FB "fake news" posts are false

20%-40% of partisan FB "fake news" posts are false

Our analysis of three hyperpartisan right-wing Facebook pages found that 38% of all posts were either a mixture of true and false or mostly false, compared to 19% of posts from three hyperpartisan left-wing pages that were either a mixture of true and false or mostly false. The right-wing pages are among the forces — perhaps as potent as the cable news shows that have gotten far more attention — that helped fuel the rise of Donald Trump. These pages,…

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Breitbart, Occupy Democrats among list of alleged fake, news sites 

Breitbart, Occupy Democrats among list of alleged fake, news sites 

[Professor] Zimdars puts the news sites into four categories. Category one deals with sites that rely on “outrage culture”, using distorted headlines or misleading information. Category two are sites that “circulate misleading and/or potentially unreliable information.” Category three is for more click-bait type websites that still deliver questionable information. And category four deals with satires news site like The Onion. The satires sites are included into the list because Zimdars thinks they sometimes contribute to the cycle of misinformation. The list includes…

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Strawman argument: False quote asserts candidate is an idiot

Strawman argument: False quote asserts candidate is an idiot

Goal: Dr. Ben Carson is an idiot Method: Assertion, Strawman Argument: Fabricate a statement about your opponent and then use that fabrication to argue your opponent is an idiot. Scorecard: Over 36,000 shares within a month of this propaganda item posted online. Snopes.com notes the headline is fiction; Dr. Carson never said what is claimed. Here is the original headline: A political report claimed Dr. Ben Carson said he had no idea how gravity works but asserted climate change is a hoax….

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Using social media to spread mass misinformation

Using social media to spread mass misinformation

Recent Wikileaks revelations have unleashed a torrent of absurdities on social media. A search of Twitter for #Wikileaks turns up numerous posts making claims that are not supported – yet are eagerly shared and “liked”. The posts cover the full spectrum from both left and right, and are all absurd. There are people asserting that a short quote from a Wikileaks document means “X” when the full context shows it does not. There are quotes that are not in the Wikileaks…

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The role of fake news sites in social media stupidity amplification

The role of fake news sites in social media stupidity amplification

Many of the fake stories conservatives are tricked into sharing have been deliberately planted by the left to make fools of us. Source: The Left is Busily Planting Fake Red-Meat Conservative News Sites | The Stream Similarly, many of the fake stories published by Occupy Democrats are used to trick liberals into sharing and making fools of themselves (see prior posts on this topic). We’ve written about this before and this also illustrates how the MSM does the same thing, as…

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#OccupyDemocrats is giving propaganda a bad name

#OccupyDemocrats is giving propaganda a bad name

TL;DR Summary Occupy Democrats makes an assertion that is easily proven wrong. The link between the bridge collapse and the real world events is a logical fallacy. This is the same format as last year’s false claim about an overpass collapse (Read that link – its unbelievable). What actually caused this collapse? A truck crashed in to the bridge, causing the collapse. “Officials say the collapse of the bridge was not a design or maintenance-related issue.” But, alluding to last year’s false poster…

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Do more people go to jail than to college?

Do more people go to jail than to college?

TL;DR Summary This type of quote is known as a “glittering generality”. The clearly implied assertion is that more people go to jail than to college but this is false. The quote makes for good propaganda but it is a lie. Comparing “instant in time” measures, there were 20.6M in college in the fall of 2012 to about 2.4 million in prison or jail or detention. 41% of those aged 18-24 are in college! Poster source: Occupy Democrats Even though the quote is…

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Denmark has free child care? Uh, no.

Denmark has free child care? Uh, no.

TL; DR Summary Part 1: Denmark is the world’s happiest nation because of the following reasons (Not true) Part 2: Denmark has a $20/hour minimum wage (No, it does not). Part 3: Denmark has a 33 hour work week (No, it does not) Part 4: Denmark has Free University ? Yes but read why – it’s not why you think Part 5: Denmark has Free Childcare? No, it does not – this claim is a lie. Part 6: Denmark has…

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Logical fallacy: Linking a $15 minimum wage in 2022 to unemployment in 2015

Logical fallacy: Linking a $15 minimum wage in 2022 to unemployment in 2015

TL; DR Summary Occupy Democrats issued propaganda posters in 2015 proclaiming that in spite of a $15 minimum wage, Seattle’s unemployment has gone down and restaurants are booming, But the $15 wage does not take effect until 3 to 7 years into the future. This linkage is a logical fallacy.                 Poster 2 Source: Occupy Democrats.  Shared over 28,000 times. There is no connection between a $15 minimum wage and Seattle restaurants or unemployment in 2015…

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Fake news is a profitable industry

Fake news is a profitable industry

TL;DR Summary Fake news is a profitable industry. More on that in a previous post. Fakes news that goes viral, generates lots of ad views; and it is not just The Onion. Social media sharing makes this possible. And makes propaganda sharing even easier. Fake news is, incidentally, a relatively new addition to the media landscape. The Internet’s always teemed with rumors and scams, of course. But the fake news industry — a crop of Web sites dedicated solely to…

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