How to verify news
Step 2: Evaluate Content
Now that we can tell if a source is trustworthy, we can dive deeper into the process of evaluating the content we watch and read all the time
(Missed Step 1? Click here to learn how to vet sources)
The truth is, evaluating content is a lot like how we vet the source to begin with. In a perfect world, we would be able to vet a source for trustworthiness and then sit back, relax, and just absorb.
But in reality, top quality content is written by humans and even humans don’t always get it right. Sometimes stories miss the mark, even at the most distinguished news organizations.
Gauge what you read and see against what you know to be true. What you have read and seen elsewhere.
Other things to consider include:
- Has the author provided context or background? Or have the issues at hand been oversimplified? News does more harm than good when people don’t tell the whole story.
- What is the tone of the story? Is it accusatory, judgmental? Or neutral? Evidence speaks for itself. Be wary of slanted content that tries to trick you into feeling a certain way. High quality journalism reports facts. It doesn’t tell you how to feel.
- Are multiple perspectives included? The more viewpoints that are shared, the better you can understand what’s really going on. When dealing with complex issues, information from experts should hold more weight than your average citizen. You don’t have to have a degree to be an expert, but qualifications should be referenced.
At VNN, we work to uphold a high standard of journalistic integrity. And we always want to know how we’re doing. Make sure to send us an email with feedback about our news service whenever the mood strikes.