There must be something with the way we appreciate news these days. With the advent of so called ‘fake news’ the public at large has suddenly been bombarded with so much data and information, particularly through the internet, that one wonders how they will ever separate the truth from the falsity of a particular event.
Event is right since by the definition provided by Merriam Webster news is a report of recent events or matter that is newsworthy.
Now the issue of fake news and its apparent rapid spread and circulation online through the web is indeed a concern for the national government since it can be used as a tool not only to influence the belief of those who are exposed to it, but also on a more dangerous level it can be utilized to sway public opinion either for or against a particular issue critical to the nation.
With the Senate conducting an inquiry on the spread of so called fake news it is vital for the Senators to understand that stricter regulation may be required or deemed necessary to curb the temptation by these so many bloggers to deliberately post, whether through the inducement of others or for personal reasons, whatever they like through the web and present and offer it as news and information for public consumption.
While respect must be given to the right of anyone to post anything they want through the internet, that right should be regulated in that it should not offend the finer sensibilities of others, poke fun at them or harass and intimidate them, or subject them to humiliating situations through such posts in the web.
There should be a line drawn in the sand so to speak against those who would spread fake news for some devious and ulterior motive or to simply to embarrass, malign or destroy the reputation of somebody using the internet.
Come to think of it, the use of fake news can be akin to cyber bullying since the only interpretation that can be made in the creation and posting of fake news is to cast aspersion against a certain individual or group or a particular establishment. And since such criticism, in the guise of news, is false then the individual or group to which such has been imputed has been prejudiced or placed at a disadvantage and without even the opportunity to defend themselves.
The Senate must put its foot down on the matter of fake news not only to protect those who disseminate legitimate news but also to safeguard the nation against those who would undermine society by taking advantage of the opportunities presented in the internet and destroy lives and reputation by the simple expediency of spreading false information.