The Fake News Crisis: How Misinformation Harms Society Reviews

The Fake News Crisis: How Misinformation Harms Society: ISBN 978-1-6782-0240-8 / eBook: 978-1-6782-0241-5
School Library Connection, March/April 2022

Fake news is a term that is often used but which students may still be unclear about. In this book, the introduction uses the January 6, 2021 attack on Congress to explain how misinformation about the results of the election were employed, mostly by those who supported President Donald Trump, to alter what actually happened that day. The introduction also explains how these altered stories pose a far-reaching problem for democracy, both in the United States and in countries around the world. The four chapters in the book explain in detail why this is true. While other examples are described briefly, the main examples are drawn from the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election. The text and font are easy to read and understand and pages include multiple breakout sections, quotes presented in colored circles, and full-color pictures. Source pages are included at the end of the book, with several references included for each chapter. This is followed by one of the most useful sections of the book, “How to Spot Fake News,” which presents tips from the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions to help students and their parents decide if a fact or article is credible. Another very helpful page, &lddqup;Organizations and Websites,” lists relevant websites along with a sentence or two of explanation about the mission of each in relation to providing information about the credibility of what one reads and hears. Additional Resources. Index.
Janet Luch, Educational Reviewer, Adjunct Professor SUNY New Paltz, Touro College Adjunct Professor, DeVry University Instructor
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The Fake News Crisis: How Misinformation Harms Society: ISBN 978-1-6782-0240-8 / eBook: 978-1-6782-0241-5
Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2022

Explains what fake news really is and why it matters.
Opening with descriptions of the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol invasion and misinformation about the outcome of the 2020 election that has continued to fuel dis! trust in the election process, Sheen explains that these are part of a wider problem of proliferation of fake news that affects us all. She devotes her first chapter to defining fake news, touches on its long history and the ways it is spread, and explores the reasons some people believe it. A second chapter focuses on science denial, with special emphasis on responses to Covid-19. A third section looks at political and social movements, including responses to the Black Lives Matter movement, Russian influence in the 2016 election and beyond, domestic extremists, and unethical political leaders. Although most of the politicians called out are Republicans, particularly former President Donald Trump, the author offers examples of Democrats as well. A final chapter describes efforts to combat fake news, including action by social media platforms and media literacy education. Sheen provides pros and cons for governmental oversight. The backmatter includes a handy list of ways to spot fake news and another of useful organizations and websites. Some topics are given special boxed treatment, quotes are pulled out for emphasis, and there are photographs throughout to break up the text. The author’s concern is evident, and she includes ample documentation as well as explanation. Strong stuff clearly expressed. (picture credits, source notes, further research, index) (Nonfiction. 12—18)