MEJO 153: Writing and Reporting

What Are We Talking About?!

What Are We Talking About? News Schema

Sites to "Check it Out"

If your mother says she loves you, check it out

More Fact Checking Websites

Stephanie Willen Brown

Stephanie Willen Brown
Park Library, Carroll Hall
UNC's School of Media & Journalism
(919) 843-8300

Graphics & Worksheet

Evaluating Sites - worksheetWorksheet on evaluating news sites. Adapted from Evaluating news sites: Credible or Clickbait? Candice Benjes-Small's work.

download Stephanie's version as a pdf.


Infographic for Credible NewsAlternative Facts and Fake News. Blog post about how libraries help battle alternative facts and fake news. From IFLA, the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions. Amazing graphic is available as a pdf and jpg.


Graphic about Fake News

Breaking News Consumer's Handbook: Fake News Edition. Melissa Zimdars, assistant professor of communication and media at Merrimack College talks with Brooke Gladstone about how to be a savvy news consumer in a misinformation-filled world. From WNYC's radio program On The Media (read transcript). On the Media created a great graphic based on their conversation.



Collected Articles, Websites about Fake News


Cites for "What Are We Talking About?"


"A secret plan by a group to do something unlawful or harmful" (oxforddictionaries). Example: According to President Trump, the idea that Russia interfered in the US election is a conspiracy

Disinformation / Disinformatzya / Dezinformatsia / Dezinformatsiya

“Its goal is not to persuade readers of its truth so much as it attempts to raise doubt in the reader that anything is true."



 "Information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote a political cause or point of view" (oxfordictionaries). 


"A humorous or malicious deception" (oxfordictionaries). Example: "Betty White is dead."

Fake News

Literally ‘lying press’; this is "a pejorative political term used largely by German political movements for the printed press and the mass media at large, when it is believed not to have the quest for truth at the heart of its coverage." (Wikipedia)

Example: The ugly history of ‘Lügenpresse,’ a Nazi slur shouted at a Trump rally by Rick Noack, Oct. 24, 2016

Truthful Hyperbole

Trump coined this in the Art of the Deal – “an innocent form of exaggeration — and a very effective form of promotion.” (How Donald Trump plays the press, in his own words by Carlos Lozada, June 17, 2015)

* Manipulated Content

A picture of mutated daisies, supposedly a result of nuclear radiation at Fukushima.

Above: Photo of misshapen daisies purported to have been harmed by nuclear radiation at the Fukushima power plant in Japan.

Mistakes / Correction

Example: Russian government hackers do not appear to have targeted Vermont utility, say people close to investigation by Ellen Nakashima and Juliet Eilperin, Jan. 2, 2017


“The use of humour, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.” (Oxford Reference)


"An imitation of the style of a particular writer, artist, or genre with deliberate exaggeration for comic effect." (Oxford Dictionary of English)

False context

Genuine content shared with false context.

Example: NC Senate leader Phil Berger posts stories with altered headlines by Colin Campbell, Mar. 9, 2017

* False Connection

When headlines don’t match content, as with clickbait.

Example: Here’s What Happened When Six Corgi Puppies Visited a College Campus by Rebecca "Burt" Rose, Aug. 3, 2014 

* all from: “Fake news. It's complicated.” by: Claire Wardle, First Draft February 16, 2017

  • Last Updated: May 23, 2017 8:42 AM
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