Spotting Coronavirus Misinformation
It's crucial to stay informed with high quality information. While there are great resources available misinformation abounds. Reading and sharing reliable and accurate resources related to COVID-19 ("Coronavirus") is important for everyone's health and safety. Here are some tools to get started.
The SIFT Methodology
Developed by Washington State University Digital Literacy Expert Mike Caulfield, SIFT involves four easy steps:
- What's your initial reaction? Does it make you angry, sad, afraid, worried, etc? STOP and move on to investigate the source.
- Investigate the source
- HOVER over the link to the news story, Twitter or Facebook profile, etc. Check the source to see whether its legitimate and verified or someone impersonating a trustworthy source
- Add "Wikipedia" to a website url to find more information about the source to see if it's legitimate or try a Google search for the source
- Find better coverage.
- When you are suspicious that a source doesn't seem plausible search for other coverage. Do a quick Google search on the topic. If no one else is reporting on the topic that's a red flag. Sometimes there is some truth to the story but the facts have been manipulated in some way. Find a more factual source to read and share.
- Trace claims, quotes, and media to the original context
- Check the date on the article. Information that perhaps was true even a few hours ago might be outdated now. Make sure you search for the most current information on a topic.
- Click through. When legitimate content is shared, the person posting it often adds a comment. This can frame or distort the facts in a misleading way. Always evaluate the original content before drawing conclusions.
Incorporating these easy basic methods into your everyday social media routine can help combat the spread of misinformation.
For more information on the SIFT method visit: https://infodemic.blog/
For more information literacy information visit the Madison College Libraries guide: https://libguides.madisoncollege.edu/InfoLitStudents