Having trouble makes sense of what news is real and what news is fake? Worry no more, The Duran has compiled a list of news sources you should avoid at all costs.
Disclaimer 1: All of the contents in this document reflect the opinion of the author and are for not educational purposes, because fundamentally I believe you are smart enough to make your own decisions. This resource was split into categories around 2:29pm GMT +2 on 17/11/16.
CATEGORY 1: Below is a list of fake, false, or regularly misleading websites that are shared on Facebook and social media. Some of these websites may rely on “outrage” by using distorted headlines and decontextualized or dubious information in order to generate likes, shares, and profits. These websites are categorized with the number 1 next to them.
CATEGORY 2: Some websites on this list may circulate misleading and/or potentially unreliable information, and they are marked with a 2.
CATEGORY 3: Other websites on this list sometimes use clickbait-y headlines and social media descriptions, and they are marked with a 3.
CATEGORY 4: Other sources on this list are purposefully fake with the intent of satire/comedy, which can offer important critical commentary on politics and society, but have the potential to be shared as actual/literal news. I’m including them here, for now, because 1.) they have the potential to perpetuate misinformation based on different audience (mis)interpretations and 2.) to make sure anyone who reads a story by The Onion, for example, understands its purpose. If you think this is unnecessary, please see Literally Unbelievable.
Note: I will not be updating the categorizations and will not be adding links gradually through the next couple of days, because I have better things to do with my life.
Many of the websites on this list continue to offer valuable journalism and/or satirical commentary. Finally, I do NOT care if you use plug-ins that automatically block any of the websites listed below. You are free to install anything you want on your computer. And as a reminder, not all of the sources listed below should be considered fake because this is just one man’s opinion. Feel free to make your own lists and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org and maybe we will publish it.
Tips for analyzing news sources:
- Avoid websites that end in “week” ex: Newsweek. These sites take pieces of accurate information and then packaging that information with other false or misleading “facts”.
- Watch out for websites that end in “.com” as they are often web site versions of fake news media conglomerates.
- Watch out if established mainstream media news sites are reporting on the story. Sometimes established media coverage is the result of corporate media bias and other factors, but there should typically be a good un-bias alternative media source reporting on a topic or event.
- Odd domain names generally equal odd domain names.
- Lack of author attribution may, but not always, signify that the news story is suspect and requires verification, or that the author decided to not publish his/her name.
- Check the “About Us” tab on websites or call the website landline number to chat with Editors and make sure that they are good guys.
- Bad web design and use of ALL CAPS can also be a sign that the news source doesn’t know dick about web design.
- If the story makes you REALLY ANGRY it’s probably a good idea to calm down and realize that it is just a news story. Go out and grab a beer with friends.
- It’s always best to read multiple sources of information if you want. Or just read one source of information. Or don’t read at all. It is up to you.
Bio: I am writing this post, and many other posts for The Duran. That is all you need to know.
Update 1: I’ve received some of emails with suggestions, very few of which are duplicates, and I will do absolutely nothing about it, because as I said above I have other things to attend to.
Update 2: No, I am not considering further coding/categorizing these sources for clarity and creating a more durable/dynamic database. See Update 1.
Update 3: Some people are asking which news sources I trust, and all I can say is that I read/watch/listen to what I find interesting. Do the same. Don’t let some university assistant professor tell you what to think and do. Live your life the way you want to, on your terms. Do not become a tool for the neo-liberal hate mongers.
Update 4: No group of AWESOME librarians will be working with this list to provide more detail, examples of the news articles in question, etc…because I have no contact with AWESOME librarians
Update 5: It should be noted I am not the first person to call out some of these websites. When I first started compiling this specific large list this morning, I did it to poke fun at the ridiculous list compiled by a clueless liberal trying to impose their values onto society. They are free to do so, but I am also free to piss on your “fake news” list and chose what I want to read and what I want to believe.