Facebook and Google Are Spreading Way Too Many Lies


Was the presidential election this year a close call? Of course not!

Kellyanne Conway, a key adviser to Donald Trump’s transistion team, says the general election “was not close” and the president-elect has a “mandate” to carry out the will of the people on issues ranging from Obamacare to national security. “This election was not close. It was not a squeaker,” Mrs. Conway said on “Fox News Sunday.” “There is a mandate there, and there is a mandate for his 100-day agenda, as well.”

Really? It sure seemed close to me. So close, in fact, that Donald Trump actually lost the popular vote. Let’s google “2016 popular vote” to find out:

It looks like Facebook isn’t the only one with a fake news problem. Surely one of the top three results on Google News shouldn’t be a nutbar blog dedicated to spreading false information about Hillary Clinton? How about giving a little higher weighting to actual news sources so this kind of stuff doesn’t happen?

Trump’s team is dedicated to telling us that the election was a landslide, and there are plenty of doofus sites out there who are happy to spread whatever lies will help that along. Nothing can stop this from happening, but at least big players like Facebook and Google should try not to help them along.

UPDATE: There’s also the problem of deliberately fake news sources. Mike Caulfield has more on that here.

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You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

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