War on Fake News

I was listening to a podcast and I came to this amazing podcast by an American named Dan Carlin, ( By the way, if you’re into podcast, I suggest you check out this guy’s channel. He has some amazing stuffs about History) and in his podcast episode entitled “King of Kings”, I learned that Persians in the olden days treat lying as a capital crime and it is punishable by death. Being caught lying on those days always guarantee you losing your head.

Negative feeling against lying is natural as nobody would like being lied to and we are thankful that today lying is not a capital crime or else the entire population of humans would be extinct.

Humans always have this aversion to lying though they are the only species on Earth that do it. That is one of the many reasons why everyone is taking a stand to stop the proliferation of Fake News in our Social Media Platform.

Here in the Philippines, big media companies and renowned media personalities are launching campaign against Fake News. I have nothing against that, as I know they are right. Wrong informations, give wrong Knowledge which usually leads to wrong decision that will ultimately result to chaos. This campaign, to my point of view must be supported fully but we are missing half of the picture here. My reason for saying that is that we have focused our attention so much on fake News or Lying on information that we forgot about sensationalized news. A higher form of Lying. A Lying on our emotions that was the product of Media Companies’ war for ratings. They found out that connecting to your audience emotionally draws higher ratings. Maybe they say that sensationalized news brings no harm rather it brings more color to the news and most importantly the data in it is not fabricated. Well, that is where they are wrong. Though the content of a sensationalized News is real, the way its laid out is overly dramatic from its headline till the end twisting its reality far from the truth. Media people would defend this as an art of delivery but I beg to disagree. This is lying to the person’s perception. It’s a cunning and more atrocious kind of lying.

In these era, when everything seems to change drastically that we can’t keep up, these two are the common ways news are being spread; through Fake News and Sensationalized News. It is also being used as a political weapon and here in our country it’s the common weapon of choice by the politicians, media personalities with business and political agenda, and the likes.

I am so glad that some of our known leaders in the media and other well-known personalities are taking step to fight fake news. But this effort will just go to waste if we ignore the other root of wrong information medium, the sensationalized news. Old folks say to stop the grass from growing in your garden, you must cut all the roots. That’s what we should do, cut all the roots of spreading wrong information our society.