Here are some more ways teens can fact-check the news:
- Look it up. Fact-checking resources will tell you whether something is true, false, or somewhere in between (see below for recommended resources).
- Check the author's bio. A reputable source will have information on the author's qualifications. If not, Google the name and see what you find.
- Expand a shortened URL. Services such as Unshorten.It! and checkshorturl let you plug in a shortened URL, such as those used on social media sites, so you can get some intel on the link before you click it.
- Get out of the loop. Facebook, YouTube, and other social media never send you off their sites. To fact-check stories, you have to see what other sources are reporting.
- Search headlines. If you think a headline is suspicious, copy and paste it into Google. If it's fake, you'll see links to sites that have debunked the story already.
- Do an image search. Google Images lets you upload a photo or paste in a link to search for information about it.
- Look for a verified account. It's easy for hucksters to create bogus profiles to impersonate famous people and send out phony information. Social media services including Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest offer "verified accounts" of notable names including those of celebrities, brands, public figures, and media personalities so you'll know when the information is coming from the correct source.
PolitiFact: Independent website fact-checks political statements
Snopes: Gruesome tales abound on this debunker of urban myths.
Poynter: News-analysis site focuses on accuracy, truth in stories.
OpenSecrets: Visuals, snappy text explain political spending details.
Fact Check: Excellent, unbiased political site goes in deep.