Legitimate and reputable news outlets have been embarrassed recently, after reporting on false news stories which turn out to be far from the truth.
Sadly, Bowie did not perform at a Suffolk curry house days before his death. And much to my disappointment there is no Vietnamese-American man called Phuc Dat Bich banned from Facebook for his name.
Facebook have been gradually tweaking their algorithm to downgrade false news outlets on peoples newsfeeds. But, outrageous and fantastical stories still slip through the net to get shared by national and international media.
How can news outlets toe the line between being the first to get the scoop on a viral story, and ensure they don't report downright lies?
Before we believe the next young Brit abroad that accidentally ends up in Syria, and shares it via his snapchat (http://on.mash.to/29sTKzf), perhaps we should take a lesson from China and ensure we check our news sources properly?
China’s top internet watchdog has new orders for the country’s online media that would be good practice around the world—verify social media accounts and sources before publishing news reports based on them. The order comes after a number of fake news stories went viral in China.