Fake News and Canada: An Examination

Fake News. It’s a term we’ve heard a lot in recent times, and one liberally used by quite a few media outlets regularly.

As dire as things may seem, things may not be as bleak as some say.

Rob Reinhardt is a stay-at-home father of two, is an avid consumer of news, usually watching daily. And in spite of the recent fake news hysteria, Rob still puts trust and faith in the news.

Rob: “Well I’ve been, I’ve been told not to, but to be honest with you I trust them one-hundred percent.,” he said, “I’m a trusting person. I trust that what they’re gonna put on, maybe cause they’re regulated right? They have to check things, they can be sued by people if they’re wrong. So I think they’re trying to be 100% truthful.”

This sentiment-the idea that news media have their actions checked by their own culpability-is reinforced by Carla Fitzsimmons, a Producer at Rogers TV with 23 years of experience, including twelve years of work at CTV News.

“Oh you have sources,” she said, “You have to have at least two to three sources on any story, and you have to have both sides of the story. And that’s not just with CTV, that’s with all media, that is traditional media, and any kind of news media. You need to have you sources, but you need to have both sides of the story.”

Larry Cornies, Program Coordinator of Conestoga College’s Journalism Program and a man with almost 50 years of experience in the journalism field, agrees with Fitzsimmons, and believes that Canadians are a bit better off when it comes to trust in the media, compared to the United States.

Cornies’ statements are backed up by an IPSOS Poll done in 2017, which found 69 percent of Canadian trust the News Media, while various polls place US trust in media at between 35 and 50 percent.

The best advice that experts give in order to avoid fake news, is to follow a few different news sources you trust, and make sure to double check their stories. Just in case.

Videographer: Matthew De Vette-Johnston