"Fake" News

Radio, newspaper, word of mouth, television, computer, and magazines are all ways to receive news. But how do we know if the information in the news is true?  Today, one of our interns Alexandra Shore gave a presentation on “fake news”. She is currently a sophomore journalism student and wanted to share her recently learned knowledge on how to sift through fact or fiction.

There is one test that she put the main focus on which is the C.R.A.A.P Test, an acronym which is supposed to remind people that there is a list of steps we can take to sift through the information.

 The C stands for currency:

  • How recent is the information?

The R stands for Relevance:

·      Who is the intended audience?


·      Who is the author/publisher/source/sponsor?

·      What are the author's qualifications to write on the topic?

·      Does the URL reveal anything about the author or source? examples: .com (commercial), .edu (educational), .gov (U.S. government), .org (nonprofit organization), or .net (network)


  • Where does the information come from?
  • Can you verify any of the information in another source or from personal knowledge?
  • Does the language or tone seem biased and free of emotion?
  • Are there spelling, grammar, or other typographical errors?


  • What is the purpose of the information? to inform? teach? sell? entertain? persuade?
  • Do the authors/sponsors make their intentions or purpose clear?
  • Is the information fact? opinion? propaganda?
  • Does the point of view appear objective and impartial?
  • Are there political, ideological, cultural, religious, institutional, or personal biases?

One tip Alexandra shared with the group is to always take information with a grain of salt until you have time to fact check the information.