You might have heard about those metered strikes that never happen. Or the fact some islands on the planet can only just exist for a decade approximately before being submerged by global warming, but they still exist half of a century later. While global warming can be a threat, are we getting fake survival warnings to prepare ourselves if you find still time?
All major issues concerning individual nations such as the 2016 Presidential election in US and the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom or those conditions that are of concern to the whole world like the matter of global warming and climate change are threatened by fake news which could lead to catastrophic results. While the main topic of fake news has gained a greater audience following a 2016 US election, fake news has still had a worrisome affect us.
Fake news is not really a recent phenomenon and has existed for quite a long time but its impact has become more widespread with the spread of the internet and social media. The fake news phenomenon has been aided by the rapid expansion of the digital medium and its capacity to deliver any message across the planet at lightening fast speed. It leads to a situation where such fake news can’t be checked, verified or challenged before it’s made available worldwide.
Scientists grapple with fake news. Scientists studying climate change are grappling with this phenomenon of fake news which is able to sow the seeds of confusion in the minds of both the general public whose support is essential to implement changes to truly save the environmental surroundings as well as your decision makers who have the responsibility of creating decisions which even though painful are necessary to avoid further environmental damage.
In this scenario it’s necessary that scientists intensify their efforts for wider dissemination of correct and factual data so that individuals become more science literate and can appreciate facts since they are and aren’t swayed by misinformation campaigns and deliberately leaked fake news. World bodies such as the United Nations believes that the 2030 sustainable development goals can be met only if scientific literature and discoveries get yourself a wider audience.
The misinformation campaigns and deliberately leaked fake news and controversies have resulted in a situation where polls both in the US and UK reveal that although a big most scientists accept the fact climate change phenomenon of the present day era is largely fueled by human activities, the general populace is not aware of such unanimity on the matter while many believe it is still an unsettled issue. This kind of large scale denial of climate change and its causes is a direct result of the failure of the scientific community to effectively challenge fake news concerning the issue.
An alteration of habits is needed. Inside their quest of wider dissemination of correct and factual data, scientists must change their long ingrained habit of sharing newspaper headlines information one of the scientific community as their prime objective and instead must develop the habit of sharing their information not only with the scientific community but with the general public also.
Inside their quest for disseminating scientific information scientists must use the help of latest technological tools so that they can develop effective way of two-way communication with the general public. The brand new interdisciplinary field of translational ecology might help scientists work towards changing environmental research into public policy.
Turning the present scenario into one where society understands and appreciates their perspective and is able to ascertain and understand the factual statements about climate change is important if environmental issues are to get widespread support over the world. One of the ways through which we can support the growth of scientific temper is to learn what fake news is and trying to avoid it from spreading.
What is fake news? From the time ancient times, rulers have indulged in slanting and planting news to serve their interests. But giving a slant to a news to suit one’s beliefs or ideology can’t be called fake news. Fake news can be described as a completely fabricated story without the basis that has been floated by vested interests to serve their particular purpose.
We are also to blame! Today with the advent of the internet everyone from someone to media to government have a share in the spread of fake news although their motives to do this may vary from increasing political clout, to achieving financial goals or any personal agenda. But how to learn whether the news headlines is genuine or fake?
In sifting for fake news, consider the origins of the news. If it’s carried by the best supply of news chances are that it won’t be fake but if it’s descends from sources you have not been aware of or are considered to be of dubious nature then you must take such news with a pinch of salt and verify it from the known authentic source before you start believing it. The most obvious solution for checking the spread of fake news is human intervention. Technology alone cannot sift and segregate fake news. Realizing this dimension Facebook has started such a practice and has enlisted International Fact Checking Network to appear into that news that users have flagged as deliberate fakes.
Stopping the spread of fake news, you yourself must begin to take responsibility of what you share. Do not share anything on the social media marketing without entering the detail of the story or the photograph. Check the foundation of the story or the photo you need to circulate and only if they result from some reputable sources should you share them.