SPOT it and stop it in
4 simple steps.
To help Canadians of all ages critically assess online news and information, and differentiate fake news from real news, News Media Canada has developed a simple media literacy tool: SPOT Fake News Online.
Ask yourself 4 critical questions
to SPOT—and stop—fake news online.
Is this a credible SOURCE?
Check the source of the article—and be skeptical.
Is this article coming from a credible, reputable source? Don’t forget, your social networks are not media outlets—look for the original source and learn who they are and what they do.
Is the PERSPECTIVE biased?
Think critically and look for varying viewpoints on an issue.
Look for outlets that report from various perspectives to ensure the credibility of a piece. Is the article distorted or not telling the full story? Does it seem designed to get people talking—could it be clickbait?
Always question if a source is hoping to inspire a desired outcome. And remember, just because you don’t agree with a particular viewpoint does not make it biased.
Are OTHER sources reporting the same story?
Be your own fact-checker and verify the validity of the story.
Look to see if multiple, credible sources—such as established media outlets—are reporting the same facts, and if they are, it’s more likely to be accurate.
Is the story TIMELY?
Check the date the story was published.
Sometimes, stories use old information, facts, photos or videos to take advantage of a timely occurrence such as a current event or announcement to bolster views.
Together we can SPOT—and stop—fake news in its tracks.
Fake news comes in many different formats, from distorted stories to altered photos and manipulated videos. If you have any doubt that something you see online may be factually incorrect, don’t spread it.
More information and additional resources on how to stop the spread of fake news online.
Canada’s centre for digital and media literacy, developing programs and resources for Canadian homes, schools and communities.
Break the Fake
In today’s digital world, we all have a responsibility to make sure something’s true before we share it online. The house hippos are here to give us that important reminder.
Help students fight information pollution The ability to evaluate information has become an essential skill of citizenship. These resources aim to equip young people with the skills needed to identify faulty information and build a habit of relying on credible sources.
Check Then Share
Stop the spread of misinformation with these simple steps: Check First. Share After. Passing along bad information is like passing along the virus itself.
International Fact Checking Report
A guide to anti-misinformation actions around the world.
Apathy is Boring
A non-partisan organization which strives to educate all Canadian youth about democracy.
Canada’s plan to defend Canadian democracy and further strengthen our electoral systems against cyber-enabled and other threats was announced on January 30, 2019.