'Fake news' is nothing new

False reporting and propaganda seen over time
Posted at 4:29 PM, Jan 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-11 21:32:39-05

DENVER -- While there’s been a lot of attention lately to “fake news” stories, it is not a new phenomenon.

The idea of promoting falsehoods and propaganda has been seen over the centuries.

In the 1800 election, John Adam’s wife, Abigail, was the target of harsh stories. 

In the 1940s, Hollywood-produced movie reels promoting the importance of American involvement in World War II were in wide circulation.

In this current environment, the prominence of the internet has allowed for questionable stories to flourish without any editorial review.

"What the internet allows us to do is, it allows us to share very widely, very quickly, without any sort of professional vetting whatsoever. And people aren't taking the time to actually check and see if things are true. They are just re-sharing that information that shares their world view," said University of Denver journalism professor Derigan Silver.

The notion of calling something "fake news" is becoming part of the political playbook, as Trump told a reporter today during a news conference.

"You look at authoritarian regimes and one of the first things they try to do is control the press. Or to at least de-legitimatize legitimate press and that's one of the things that we're seeing Donald Trump do right now.  He's constantly questioning the press,” said Silver.


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