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Evaluating news: Fake News & Beyond

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Library Databases

What makes real news real

Tips on Finding Real News

What to do:

  1. Read/watch/listen very widely.
  2. Be critical of the sources we share and engage with on social media.
  3. Some generally reliable sources are (some of which require a subscription): The New York TimesThe Washington Post, The Boston GlobeThe Wall Street JournalForbesThe AtlanticNational Public RadioPBS NewsHour, BBC World News, The Economist, The Pew Research Center, Democracy Now, as well as various local sources.
  4. Recognize that even typically reliable sources, whether mainstream or alternative, corporate or nonprofit, rely on particular media frames to report stories and select stories based on different notions of newsworthiness.
  5. Use Library Databases on current events and news. Skyline College Library provides full, complimentary access to and New York Times mobile apps to Skyline College students, faculty, and staff. Here are instructions on how to access


What to avoid:

  1. “Fake, false, regularly misleading sites” which rely on “outrage” using distorted headlines and decontextualized or dubious information in order to generate likes, shares, and profits” (examples:​
  2. Websites that may circulate misleading and/or potentially unreliable information (examples:
  3. These websites sometimes use clickbait-y headlines and social media descriptions (examples:
  4. Purposefully fake satire/comedy sites that can offer critical commentary on politics and society, but have the potential to be shared as actual/literal news (examples: