A busy 2017 #3 Fake, gossip and real news

In the year that it was 20 years ago princes Diana died, prince Harry brought the news of going to marry Meghan Markle.

The gossip magazines and scandal-papers had a mouthful to tackle in 2017. Donald Trump was the number one spoken off in many papers and television journals, which only could tell about his grimaces and whims. He constantly had it about fake news and took care every day some new tricks could be disposed.

I wonder what most republicans think of the real-estate developer they voted for to be the 45th president of the United States of America. Would the supporters who seemed to be pleased by his combativeness, his provocative language, and his outsider status, still be liking him?

Trump, Donald

Typical gesture of the Fake News accuser Donald Trump

During the presidential election campaign, some of Trump’s critics had already warned that his presidency could create a unique and immediate constitutional crisis because of his possible violation of the foreign emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution, which generally prohibits federal officeholders from accepting gifts, payments, or other items of value from foreign states or rulers without congressional permission. It took June before the attorneys general of Maryland and the District of Columbia sued Trump for allegedly having violated both the foreign and domestic emoluments clauses, and soon afterward nearly 200 Democratic members of Congress filed a separate suit alleging that, by continuing to accept emoluments from foreign states without consulting Congress, Trump had denied them the opportunity to give or withhold their “Consent” as required under the foreign emoluments clause.

The American lawyer who served as the seventh Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) from September 4, 2013 until his dismissal on May 9, 2017, James Comey in March confirmed, in testimony before Congress, that there was a collusion between Russian officials and prominent members of the Trump campaign. Democratic members of Congress, meanwhile, expressed dismay that Comey had chosen to report the discovery of additional Clinton e-mails in October but had waited until after the election to reveal the Russia investigation.

In June many Americans watched from bars and restaurants, which opened early in some parts of the country to provide venues for viewing the much-anticipated event of Comey’s testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, broadcast live on television, radio, and the Internet. By the end of the year nobody could doubt Trump’s alleged desire to shut down the Russia investigation, but one can wonder why nobody dared to accuse the family Trump and certain Republican campaigners for treason. This would be the first time in history of the United States of America and would cause a big uproar, most politicians like to avoid.

In June president Trump already announced to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change, which was made within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020. The very cold temperatures at the transition of the year where for Trump a proof that there is no such thing as global warming. For him the States have to concentrate more on using all the available sources to support the economy and to provide as many as possible some work, even if that demands an environmental cost. For him nothing may harm the American economy (through government-mandated reductions in the country’s greenhouse gas emissions). Trump’s decision was condemned by government and political leaders, scientists, business executives, and activists throughout the world but praised by Republicans in Congress, who viewed it as a reassertion of American independence in world affairs and a repudiation of the environmental policies of the Obama administration.

Even when they could witness extreme weather differences in their own State many Republican lawmakers still doubt that climate change is real, while others continued questioning the human origins of global warming.

Infographic How to spot fake news published by the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions

Donald Trump seems to be the champion for providing deliberate misinformation or hoaxes whilst he accuses the others of ‘fake news’. Problem with all the social media and several bloggers and players on the internet is that several people are not serious questioning that what is presented to them and multiply by sharing certain false messages, making it also difficult for others to know if it is real or false.
An analysis by Buzzfeed found that the top 20 fake news stories about the 2016 U.S. presidential election received more engagement on Facebook than the top 20 news stories on the election from 19 major media outlets. {Chang, Juju; Lefferman, Jake; Pedersen, Claire; Martz, Geoff (November 29, 2016). “When Fake News Stories Make Real News Headlines”. Nightline. ABC News.}

Lots of people on Facebook do not take the time to check the source or the author and just share it, creating a real huge hoax, by the end lots of people really believing it.

Berners-Lee, Sir Tim

British computer scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee

In 2017, the inventor of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee claimed that fake news was one of the three most significant new disturbing Internet trends that must first be resolved, if the Internet is to be capable of truly “serving humanity.” The other two new disturbing trends that Berners-Lee described as threatening the Internet were the recent surge in the use of the Internet by governments for both citizen-surveillance purposes, and for cyber-warfare purposes. {The World Wide Web’s inventor warns it’s in peril on 28th anniversary By Jon Swartz, USA Today. March 11, 2017. Retrieved March 11, 2017.}

On Facebook we got bombarded with so much fake news we lost so much time checking the data, that not much time was left over for the serious news. When in August 2017 Facebook stopped using the term “fake news” and used “false news” in its place instead, Will Oremus of Slate found that it made sense for Facebook — and others — to

“cede the term to the right-wing trolls who have claimed it as their own.”

Facebook which has already a lot of Facebook Groups which in a lot of instances is just a waste of time, has 30% of all fake news traffic as opposed to only 8% of real news traffic. In April i got an I-Pad and thought it perhaps interesting to be active on some Facebook Groups. To my regret I have lost a lot of time to no avail. Before I knew often I was longer scrolling into the many messages and trying to react on many postings for longer than I would have loved to do. I better could have spend the precious time on more serious things.

Some think Facebook gets more people onto your blog. But looking at the likes on the Facebook pages and the Facebook Groups I noticed they did not bring more readers to the blog. Looking at the analytics I could even see that most persons who liked the heading on Facebook or Facebook Pages, did not come to read the full article. That is the main problem with Facebook. Most people just read the headings and never go over to read the article.

All that false or fake news are a danger for normal free speech and should worry us. Certainly when Facebook, Google, and Twitter become or are the main or primary channels for news consumption, we should be alert and provide enough real information.

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Preceding

A busy 2017 #1 Referenda

A busy 2017 #2 From hero to zero

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Additional reading

  1. What makes you following Christ and Facebook Groups

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About Marcus Ampe

Retired dancer, choreographer, choreologist Founder of the Dance impresario office and archive: Danscontact-Dansarchief plus the Association for Bible scholars, the Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" and "From Guestwriters" and creator of the site "Messiah for all". - Gepensioneerd danser, choreograaf, choreoloog. Stichter van Danscontact-Dansarchief plus van de Vereniging voor Bijbelvorsers, de Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" en "From Guestwriters" en maker van de site "Messiah for all".
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7 Responses to A busy 2017 #3 Fake, gossip and real news

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