When it comes to pranking the enemies, leftists and Democrats haven’t left high school. That’s the impression one gets from reading a piece from Rachel Alexander at The Stream.
It used to be The Onion was the only satire news site. And the site makes it very clear its news is satire. But within the last year, multiple sites (there is a list compiled here) have sprung up that do not make it clear they are satire, if at all. They brazenly post fake news that isn’t even funny, like The Onion, but sounds like legitimate news.
The list will be posted at the end of this piece.
As it happens, the sites Ms. Alexander discusses, for the most part, post “red meat” articles for the conservative base. Knowing that the base is cued in to clicking and sharing without always checking out the facts included in an article, especially when it is written for shock value, false stories get spread around and sooner or later the wrong person buys into it, and GOTCHA! comes from media personas eager to make conservatives look bad.
By posting these outlandish tales, the sites attract many page views, which allows them to make money from advertisers. Even more nefarious, some are run by Democrats in order to make conservatives look like radical extremists. The strategy, an insider told me, is to fool so many conservatives into spreading a ridiculous, fake article that finally a prominent elected official falls for it. Then the left pounces on the official and makes them look foolish and/or an extremist.
As I’ve written previously, putting out heroic stories about Donald Trump that turn out to be false doesn’t help Trump when people discover they are false.
It also calls into question the ones that are actually true.
How to spot these fake sites is tricky in and of itself. Most of them have names and URL addresses similar to long running sites familiar to many conservatives. In addition, in their disclaimer sections, most of the sites in question are not completely forthcoming.
Some of the worst offenders are sites that rip off names from legitimate conservative news sites. World News Daily Report is a typical example. It sounds very similar to the conservative site WorldNetDaily, which recently renamed itself to WND. The disclaimer on the site says nothing about the news being fake; instead, it disingenuously states that the site is not responsible for inaccurate information.
The moral of the story is when a meme or tale comes to your attention that seems too good to be true, double check other sites and any sources linked to ensure that it is. If a site does not link to other known entities or the story doesn’t pop up on a big name site even with a leftist lean, refrain from sharing it. More likely than not, it really is just too good to be true. Sites to look out for include:
- http://News-Hound.org (maybe not satirical but a lot are definitely fake)
- http://www.sott.net/ (seems to be a mixture of satire/real news with no obvious way to tell which is which)
- https://aceflashman.wordpress.com (News lifted straight from The National Reporter)
- http://nymeta.co (News lifted straight from The National Reporter without checking them)
- http://madworldnews.com (potentially fake stories)
- http://stuppid.com (http://realorsatire.com/stuppid-com)
- http://newsexaminer.net – mixture of real and fake news