Staff Editorial ¦
The term “fake news” is something that is tossed around rather frequently these days, and it isn’t a good indicator of the public’s relationship with the media. But what exactly is fake news?
Most everyone has probably formed their own definition of “fake news.” For your great aunt Carol, it’s probably something along the lines of, “that darn leftist CNN.” For that guy you went to high school with that spends all day sharing conspiracy theories on Facebook, all news is probably fake news. At its core, though, fake news is a story that is published that either contains incorrect information, or is entirely made up. It’s hard to blame a whole news organization for contributing to the fake news epidemic, when in reality, it’s a journalist’s responsibility to produce accurate and unbiased information.
A journalist’s job is to report the news and tell stories in the most truthful and objective way possible. You must talk to multiple sources, check your facts and then check your fact-checking. Make sure that everything you write or say is the whole truth, and not what best serves you, your organization or political leaders.
On that same note, it’s up to readers to decide who they can trust. With the help of the internet, news spreads extremely quickly — even fake news. Because of this, readers can’t take anything at face value. Just because someone says something is true doesn’t mean it is, and the same works for saying something is false.
We, The Ranger Staff, urge readers and journalists alike to do their research and devote themselves to the truth. If we continue to spread misinformation, whether purposefully or not, we do a huge disservice to ourselves and those around us. The truth is a valuable tool and one that should always be used.