Fake News as a Problem of Modern Society

Subject: Entertainment & Media
Pages: 4
Words: 1045
Reading time:
4 min
Study level: College


Fake news is socially impactful unethical problem because it misleads. Fake news is incorrect or misleading information and is presented as news. Fake news is frequently published with the intent of harming a person’s or entity’s reputation or profiting from advertising income. With the internet and social media, particularly the Facebook News Feed, the incidence of fake news has surged significantly (Quandt 5). The spread of fake news is linked to political division, post-truth ideology, cognitive bias, motivated reasoning, and social media algorithms. The usage of hidden websites has made libel prosecutions against purveyors of fake news more challenging.

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Fake news is a crucial issue in social platforms and beyond at the moment. Political misinformation is characterized as a substantial threat to democracy. It is defined as a deliberate establishment and communicating of false or exploited information that’s also intended to harm and mislead viewers. Either for the reasons of causing any harm, or for political, personal, or financial gain. This is part of a larger picture of information operations carried out by governments and other organizations. Political clout, increased group polarization, decreased trust, and a general undermining of civil society are targeted outcomes. Online processes are not the only ones that impact (Quandt 5). They frequently seep into other aspects of our existence with experiments demonstrating that exposure to misinformation can lead to a shift in mindset. There are several real-world examples of people assaulting telecoms’ masts in response to misleading news about ‘5G causing coronavirus.’ The use of social media deception as a persuasion technique is widespread: computational propaganda has indeed been defined as a general and ubiquitous component of modern life.

Fake news has far-reaching impacts on human rights and democracy standards worldwide. It jeopardizes freedom of expression, privacy, and participatory democracy, as well as a variety of other economic, social, and cultural rights. It also degrades more significant measures of democratic quality, eroding voters’ trust in democratic systems by stifling the electoral process and inciting digital aggression and repression (Lazer 94). Simultaneously, as corporations and governments take this issue more seriously, it becomes clear that many of their counter-disinformation programs conflict with human rights and democracy. Because of the rapid spread of “false news” made possible by technology, some have expressed concern that disinformation has become “the major moral dilemma of our day.” (Lazer 94). However, some people consider it morally acceptable to propagate false information when it helps them further their political agenda.

According to one prominent explanation, the inability to distinguish between accurate and misleading news stems from political motivations. When confronted with politically balanced content, for example, it has been suggested that people are driven consumers of (mis)information who engage in ‘identity-protective cognition,’ which leads them to be overly trusting of subject matter that is coherent with their partisan authenticity and highly skeptical of subject matter that is unreliable with their partisan identity (Gelfert 100). Any use of social networking sites deception as a persuasive method is common: computational propaganda has been labeled as a generic and pervasive feature of modern life. People put their political identities above the facts, according to one idea, and hence fail to distinguish truth from deception in favor of merely believing concordant ideology information. According to these accounts, the primary factor explaining why individuals believe fake news is transmitting information and common understanding influence of political motive on accepting.

A Case Study

Paul Horner, a false news writer, was behind the widely circulated hoax that he was the street artist Banksy and was arrested and that a guy stopped a robbery at a diner by citing Pulp Fiction. According to CBS News, he had an enormous impact on the 2016 US presidential election. These reports frequently showed in Google’s headline news search results, were widely shared on Facebook, and were taken seriously and reposted by third parties, including Trump presidency campaign director Corey Lewandowski (Gelfert 100). Horner later said that his goal during this time was to make Trump supporters appear like idiots for repeating my stories. Horner expressed remorse for his fake news pieces’ impact in the election in a November 2016 interview with The Washington Post and expressed amazement at how stupid people were in considering his tales as news.

Horner genuinely regretted the comment about thinking Donald Trump being in the White House due to him Horner said in February 2017. All Horner did was attack him through his supporters to influence people to vote against him. He made the statement because he couldn’t figure out how this horrible man got elected President, and he concluded that instead of hurting his campaign, he could have helped it. The goal was to convince his supporters not to vote for him, which he believe he accomplished. Horner said on Cooper Anderson 360 in November 2016 that all media is propaganda and that CNN “spreads misinformation” a week before Trump made the same charge.


Some people argue that fake news is simply a result of personal views differing from one group to another. It is not always the case that what you believe is true. There is a distinction to be made here. Just because someone disagrees with you will not mean the facts they are offering is untrue or fictitious. It also does not support that we are constantly bombarded with information. Social media is used to propagate a great deal of information that has been declared to be fake news (Gelfert 100). Currently, most people have a social media profile, including Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube and as a result, YouTube remains a media platform.

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Response to the Objection

The above objection is not proper because fake news can mislead people. If a powerful individual says something, people are more likely to trust it. One of the most severe consequences of fake news is forming a wrong impression of someone. When a well-known figure with millions of followers misinforms the public about an incident, they will believe it wholeheartedly. People will either change their minds on the individual being discussed or be misled by incorrect information without researching. The actor’s primary goal is to deceive the audience into framing a topic or an individual (Vedder 211). Fake news can have various negative consequences, including the loss of life.

Works Cited

Gelfert, Axel. “Fake news: A definition.” Informal logic 38.1, 2018: 84. Web.

Lazer, David MJ, “The science behind fake news.” Science 359.6380, 2018: 94. Web.

Quandt, Thorsten, “Fake news.” The international encyclopedia of journalism studies, 2019: Web.

Vedder, Anton, “Reliability of information on the Internet: Some distinctions.” Ethics and Information Technology, 2003: 100. Web.