Can 'fake news' be stopped?

Fake news became a phenomenon during the presidential campaign. But it has actually been around much longer, dating back to Superstorm Sandy. False stories are spread on social media, and unfortunately plenty of people believe them.

Dr. Larry Chiagouris is a marketing professor at Pace University. He has been studying fake news for several years. He and other academics and scientists, like Professor Filippo Menczer with Indiana University, are developing ways to fight back against fake news.

Menczer and other researchers at Indiana University created Hoaxy. It tracks the tweets on Twitter that are shared the most and then highlights in purple the fringe and bogus sites that traditionally post unsubstantiated stories. Hoaxy also gives you, in orange, fact-checking organizations, so you can check to see if the stories are true. On top of that, Hoaxy can show you how the real news and the fake news stories are being spread.

Chiagouris says that another way of battling fake news is through advertising. Many hoax sites are supported by ads. If these advertisers chose to pull their ads, many of the sites would shut down, he says.