We all know what covid19 is, and we are all suffering from this global epidemic. We know that we have come a long way but that it is not over yet. One indicator is the information we receive regarding cases, precautions and preventions on a daily basis. So, you may wonder what this virus has to do with disinformation and fake news, and I will answer you, much more than you think. In fact, covid19 has increased the amount of news and with it, all those false or contradictory to the truth, thus causing less information or a huge distortion of what is true.
We need to be informed and well informed. That is why polices and legislations are increasing about this topic, and appearing in the constitutional laws of ONU countries. For example, in France they established an education policy in place since December 2018, which states that French public schools must teach students how to navigate online information, including skills for the “critical analysis of available information”, and how to assess the reliability of information. Freedom of expression is considered an “essential freedom” but fake news can cause social disorders. So the institutions specialised in the prevention of actions such as these, that work by raising awareness and taking effective action are very important.
Covid, although it is really making us suffer one of the biggest crises, has made realise that there are many points of improvement.
We believe that the basis for the correction and total elimination of fake news lies in the unification of ideologies and thinking between right-wing and left-wing politics. Today, 33% of the population do not believe that the information they receive is completely accurate and that the media can distort it, so there is also a need for a unification of the characters of the media, both on television and in the press and radio. As I said before, we believe it is vital to create and strengthen structures to eradicate this problem, and the idea is to continue to do so. We have initiated the setting up of an accessible and visible reporting mechanism. This will ensure that we can guarantee the transparency of the algorithms. Although we have said that the media can sometimes modify content according to their ideals, once we have unified these, the content of newspapers, news agencies and audiovisual communication services should be promoted in the same way. Detect and counteract accounts that disseminate false information on a massive scale, thus guaranteeing the transparency of the promoted content. Finally, a point of great interest would be to promote media and information literacy.
By: Isaac Vila, Josep Roura