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6 Ways to Spot Disinformation Online: Protecting Yourself from Fake News

Disinformation and fake news has never been more prevalent on the internet, and it can be extremely challenging for anyone to distinguish what statements/content/articles are true and what is false. At TITAN the team has experienced first-hand the confusion, division, and harm that disinformation causes, which is why we are making it our mission to help people be able to spot it.


Our chatbot which will use large-language models to engage with users, will offer personalised coaching that will help raise the users critical thinking skills in regards to deciding on whether content is true or not. Our solution will not tell someone 'the answer', rather, it helps impart crucial skills to help them come to their own conclusions; skills that will help them in other areas of life.


As you can imagine it takes time to build such a complex offering, so in the meantime, whilst we are in the design and development phase, here are six ways to spot disinformation online:

Red brick wall with a sign saying 'from the source'.


(1) Check the source - Before you read an article or share a post, check the source. Is it a credible news outlet or a well-known source of information? If not, it's a red flag that the information may not be reliable.



handprints in black ink on a blue wall

(2) Look for evidence - Disinformation often lacks evidence or sources to back up its claims. Be sceptical of claims made without any supporting evidence. Check the facts and verify them with reputable sources.




Eggs in a fridge compartment with emotional faces drawn on them - scared, laughing, frowning and puzzled

(3) Watch for emotional language - Disinformation often uses emotional language to manipulate the reader's emotions. Be wary of articles or posts that use loaded words, hyperbole, or appeal to fear or anger.



Close up of a man checking his wrist watch

(4) Consider the timing - Disinformation is often timed to coincide with an event or news story to take advantage of public interest or concern. Check the date of the article or post and see if it matches up with other reputable sources.



Close up of a website with a rating system

(5) Check the comments - Check the comments section for other people's reactions to the information. If people are calling it out as false or inaccurate, it's a sign that you should be sceptical.




Graphic of an AI chatbot showing speech bubbles between a user and the chatbot.

(6)Use fact-checking tools - There are numerous fact-checking tools available online that can help you verify the accuracy of a claim or article. Websites like Snopes, FactCheck.org, and Politifact can help you fact-check a claim and determine if it's true or false.



Whilst disinformation is widespread, by being vigilant and critical of the information we consume, we can protect ourselves from fake news and ensure we are making informed decisions based on facts and evidence. Remember to follow these tips when reading content online and subscribe to TITAN updates (email box in website footer) to be informed of our solution innovation and testing opportunities. www.titanthinking.eu


6 Ways to Spot Disinformation Online: Protecting Yourself from Fake News

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