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Fake News: Identify, Evaluate, Stop: Categories

Learn to verify fact-based news resources for research.

Why does it matter?

  • You deserve the truth
  • Fake news destroys your credibility
  • Fake news can hurt you
  • Real news can benefit you

UT Responds to Fake News

Fake News Categories

There are four broad categories of fake news, according to media professor Melissa Zimdars of Merrimack College.

CATEGORY 1: 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.

CATEGORY 2: Websites that may circulate misleading and/or potentially unreliable information

CATEGORY 3: Websites which sometimes use clickbait-y headlines and social media descriptions

CATEGORY 4: Satire/comedy sites, which can offer important critical commentary on politics and society, but have the potential to be shared as actual/literal news

Political Satire and Parody

These sites are known parody and satire sites to provide commentary. They are purposefully fake but have the potential to be reported literally.