2017-01-04 / Front Page

Internet In Bloom For The Layperson

By Ted J. Bloom, MLS., MSEd., CPL., CKMI.

Ted Bloom, MLS., MSEd., CPL.,CKMI.,Ted Bloom, MLS., MSEd., CPL.,CKMI.,Fake news.  It is the latest media buzzword or term.  Transparent is another beauty.  May I recommend www.thefreedictionary.com as it has multiple dictionaries, such as: medical, legal and financial ones?  It also contains an encyclopedia and many foreign language translations.  Consider fake news: the first newspaper was published in Rome by orders of Julius Caesar in 59 B.C.  My point here, is fake news is far from being new.  News is supposed to be new.  News and newspapers have been making corrections for their published mistakes for ages, literally.  Fake news has been around so long that dictionaries have several names for it, such as: propaganda, blowback, misinformation, disinformation, gossip, dirty laundry, bum steers...

However, there are a few websites one may wish to consult when trying to decipher any news.  Visit www.factcheck.org for a nonpartisan, nonprofit “consumer advocate” for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in politics courtesy of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.  Go to www.snopes.com for urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation.  They even accept reader rumors to debunk and publish.  I was informed in library school that mainstream media will publish whatever the government wants it to.  One creative alternative to mainstream news is a group of outstanding independent journalists, whose ringleader in the accomplished global pharmaceutical buster "America's Lawyer" Mike Papantonio along with his side-kick, ecology expert, Attorney Robert Kennedy, Jr., with such renowned writers as historian Thom Hartmann and Trial Lawyer Magazine Editor, Farron Cousins.  They may be found with comedian-journalist Sam Seder on www.ringofireradio.com or www.trof.com.  It is a great website for coverage of uncommon events the mainstream overlooks, such as the Dakota Pipeline scandal and protests, or pharmaceutical scams with major players such as Bayer, Merck, Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson.

Moreover, another way to combat the onslaught of fake news lately, is to use common sense and question everything, such as: Is the source listed at all?  If so, is the source an accomplished professional with universal credentials such as education related degrees, awards or publications in their field?  Is proper spelling and grammar used?  Is the data located on a reputable source, known for its reporting accuracy or is found where anyone of any age or experience may post information, such as an online wiki like www.wikipedia.com?  Question more.

Ted Bloom, MLS., MSEd., CPL.,CKMI., NP has been a published columnist in New York since 1999. A librarian and professor with two graduate degrees, some of his credentials include, creating and running a career preparation computer lab for at-risk youth through the U.S. Department of Labor, as well as being a NYS Notary Public, SUNY Communications Instructor, a YMCA Director and a Certified Krav Maga Instructor.  His first book The Librarian's Guide to Employment in the Information Age is now available on Amazon.com.







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