Some of the techniques she cited include checking dates, googling to see if other outlets are covering the story, and being skeptical of items that provoke a particularly strong emotional reaction.
Turvey said they’ve tried to make the campaign humorous and fun so that it’s engaging. To do that, they’ve commissioned public service announcements from Canadian YouTube stars from a channel called AsapSCIENCE, which has over eight million subscribers.
Google News, which supported the campaign to the tune of $1 million in funding, said promoting media literacy and fighting misinformation were among the company’s top concerns.
“To be an engaged citizen, you have to have access to quality journalism… you have to understand what is quality journalism and what is not,” said Richard Gingras, vice-president of Google News.
Gingras said the benefit of a program like “Doubt It?” is that it targets people of all ages and backgrounds, and gives people a way to learn about the issue outside of a classroom.
“An election cycle is a very rich target for misinformation,” he said.
© Toronto Star