A crowdsourced set of materials on “alternative news” from the Oxford Institute: “Alternative Facts”: how do you cover powerful people who lie? Thanks to Professor Jeff Jarvis for sharing this resource.
The networks and other organizations that distribute news should:
Filter out fake news better
Other authorities (government, business, education) should:
Fact-checking doesn’t ‘backfire,’ new study suggests, Poynter.org
Here's a link to the new study referenced in the above article: The Elusive Backfire Effect: Mass Attitudes' Steadfast Factual Adherence, Aug. 5, 2016 by Thomas Wood, Ohio State University & Ethan Porter, University of Chicago; George Washington University
More info on Fact Checking:
Showing your work, and being transparent about your reporting process is a tool to establish authenticity, and encourage discovery and engagement, according to Josh Stearns of the Democracy Fund Designing Journalism for Discovery and Engagement & Why Journalists Should Use Transparency as a Tool to Deepen Engagement.
One example of show-your-work journalism is this video Inside Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold's investigation of Donald Trump's charitable giving:
Focus on policy, rather than antics:
"The candidates’ controversies received more coverage, on average, than their views on the economy. From June until Election Day, 38 percent of the stories mentioned Mr. Trump’s various missteps, and 35 percent mentioned Mrs. Clinton’s email. Only 17 percent mentioned Mr. Trump and jobs or the economy, and only 10 percent cited Mrs. Clinton’s campaign and the economy." Why This Election Was Not About the Issues, by Lynn Vavreck for The UpShot. Vavreck is a professor of political science at the University of California, Los Angeles, and a co-author of “The Gamble,” about the 2012 presidential campaign.
"As any veteran of politics will tell you, we must watch what leaders do more than what they say. It is vital that the press mind the cookie jar. We need journalists to watch for public malfeasance, stealing, corruption, law breaking, private enrichment, rewarding friends, and abuse of power...Abuse of power is not a partisan or ideological issue. It is a moral one—and one citizens in both parties care about. But to keep their eye on that prize, the press needs to not be diverted by the magician’s patter." What the post-Trump debate over journalism gets wrong, We don’t need journalists to hold fast or change everything, but a little of both, Tom Rosenthiel
"According to Emily Thorson, a political scientist at Boston College, there is one area where people will change their minds when faced with the facts: policy, particularly when it isn’t perceived to be partisan. By covering policies rather than candidates’ antics, the press may be able to persuade with facts after all.
"'There is a tendency to blame voters, but it’s really hard to find [policy] information. It’s hard to figure out what the candidates’ policies would actually mean for your life because the media spent so much time on horse-race coverage, what they did or didn’t say, or whether they were lying,' Thorson said. 'Academics have been saying this about journalism for a long time, but I think it was especially magnified in this campaign.'" Fact-Checking Won’t Save Us From Fake News, Brooke Borel, Author of The Chicago Guide to Fact-Checking, FiveThirtyEight
According to Carrie Brown-Smith, Social journalism director at CUNY Graduate School of Journalism: Social journalism is about finding new ways to serve communities. To recast journalism as a service that helps communities meet their goals and solve problems. Listening to a community: understanding and empathizing with its needs and learning how to help a community share its own knowledge.
Here's Carrie's list of Best Resources on Community Engagement and Social Journalism.
According to Jennifer Preston, Vice President for Journalism, Knight Foundation: "Quality journalism matters...it is a buttress against the torrent of fake news we've seen explode in the past year, and it can help rebuild the diminishing trust many people have in society's core institutions...At Knight, we are supporting projects to help journalists and news organizations build trust with their audience by engaging more directly with community residents." 5 Questions For...Philanthropy News Digest
The challenge for reporters, is that when they call out untruths, “it gives the appearance of supporting one side of the hyper-politicized debate. But it’s not support—it’s journalism.” “We need journalists to be able to say, sometimes: ‘You believe that, but it’s not true...But having a press that can do that is really hard. It requires not only journalists willing to defy powerful actors, willing to risk being called one-sided, willing to discomfort their audience, but also readers, viewers, listeners who are willing to listen to that.” Jay Rosen professor of journalism at New York University, cited in Post-Truth Politics, Nieman Reports.
"Responsible journalists should simply state to their audience that they have decided that to be anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-homophobic, etc. is an acceptable form of bias, much as journalists of times past eventually decided it was unnecessary and abhorrent to get a quote from someone to defend lynching when writing a story about these horrific crimes." What Journalism Needs To Do Post-Election, Carrie Brown-Smith, Social journalism director at CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.