Did Fake News cause Brexit?

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Before the 2016 election, there was a lot of campaigning on both sides. Especially for the Leavers, they often resorted to stretching the truth or outright lying to get what they want. An example of this was how we would not get bossed around by the EU. Although they would have less power over us, that power over us works both ways, hence we would also have influence over the EU and possibly other EU countries so we would have more power in the long term. That is one of the main ones but there are far too many to cover in this single post.

Speaking of misinformation, I think social media did not help either because we rely on it and use it more and more as the days go on. An obvious reason is that anyone can say anything that they want but without as many precautions put in place. Even Wikipedia have moderators that can take down inappropriate or factually incorrect material. Because of that, lies can spread extremely quickly! Even if the information that you see there is true, it will often be polarised to your specific views so you will be more interested and stay on social media for longer, which allows the companies to make more money from showing you advertisements. But even non-Brexit related posts could still influence people because they might have left-winged or right-winged ideoligies, which may influence your opinion on Brexit because the far-right or left are generally more likely to vote leave then people who have more centerist views.

You may have heard about the post-truth, which states that people are more divided on opinions than ever because of the reasons that I explained previously. It is very easy for people on opposing sides to spread false information about their opponents in order to get their way. In my opinion, this is the main reason why fake news is so prevelant today. Today, the news is a lot more about emotion and less about the facts. The most prevelant emotion in the news nowadays is anger because it is an emotion that can easily trigger us to share it to more and more people.

This leads onto everyone becoming even more divided on their opinions, thus making it harder for us to settle on a deal or leaving in the first place. I believe that social media giants such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram should take more action to solve this problem. However, they are probably reluctent to do so since they would lose money because of the reason that I mentioned in the secong paragraph. What is even worse is that they have become monopolies which begs the question again about why they are not taking more action. I think that they have more than enough money to do so, yet they still do not do it because they want to get bigger and bigger.

Comments (18)

  • Olivia-Avatar.jpg Olivia @ the BNC
    01 Mar 2019

    You raise an important point about social media and fake news - well done for bringing this into the conversation! I am going to add some questions for other people to answer, as your post is very detailed an might be a bit difficult for some to get their head around!

    1. Do you think social media has changed the way people vote in elections? If so, how?
    2. Should we make sure people see both sides of the debate when on social media?
    3. Should social media be just for fun?

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  • Bruntcliffe-logo-250x250.jpg mesmerising_aspect | Bruntcliffe Academy
    01 Mar 2019

    I think that social media has changed the way that people vote in elections as social media is an easy way for people to post about their feelings on a subject. Social media is also a way for people to post fake news to make people think a certain way. It is very easy for people to be affected by social media as it is a widely used platform. Also, the majority of people who use social media are young and can be easily manipulated/

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  • Bruntcliffe-logo-250x250.jpg educated_economics | Bruntcliffe Academy
    01 Mar 2019

    i think social media has had a big part in BREXIT. This is because many people are influenced by the media, weather this is when you are deciding what to wear, or other choices in life.

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    1. Streatham-Wells-logo-250x250.jpg focused_measurement | Streatham Wells Primary School A
      educated_economics's comment 02 Mar 2019

      I agree that social media has a big part to brexit because a lot of people think that you can trust the social media when most of the time it doesn't tell the truth.

      Reply to this comment
  • John-Ray-logo-250x250.jpg free_memory | John Ray Junior School
    01 Mar 2019

    I think social media has had a big part in brexit

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  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_singer | The Ruth Gorse Academy
    01 Mar 2019

    Social media could change the way people vote because, people see others protesting against Brexit, and maybe the people want what they voted for. However, I doubt that there will be a second referendum, owing to the fact that the results would change dramatically. Also, before a vote people on social medias like Facebook could be talking about the positives and negatives of the choices. This could help people prepare and decide what or who they want to vote for. Say that you're voting for a knew student counsel, student ambassadors, prefects etc. And you don't know anything about any of the candidates, so you may want to find out more about them before you finalist your vote. This may be talking to them, reading their promises or... looking on their social media. But looking on someones social media in secret may not be the best thing to do though. A different way social media can change the way that people vote could be that the person doesn't vote at all. This may be because, we all know that there has been a lot of talk about Brexit, this may be overwhelming for some people as there is so much commotion.
    People already do see both sides of a debate on social media. Lots of different people talk about what they want to happen on social media. We should see both sides on social media because it helps us see pros and cons. Also, we could compare the too different texts to see which one is true. For example, one might use a lot of slang but the other may be very formative. Some people may not want to see both sides because, they may think that what they think is the only thing that is right and may not want to see other people's opinions. Furthermore, the person may choose to become offended by what others have said. But in my opinion, both sides should be shown.
    Social media shouldn't just be for fun. I think this because, on Whats app most of the people from our school are on our BNC group chat, and we talk about well, BNC! However, there is a weakness in my answer because we can easily get distracted ( but we do talk about BNC ). Social media is mainly used for fun though. But recently Brexit is being talked about a lot because 'it's a hot topic'.

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  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg affable_weaver | The Ruth Gorse Academy
    01 Mar 2019

    Although I agree with what you, Blessed Computer, have said about fake news, the way you say it makes you seem biased towards staying in the EU, and I personally think that no article should be biased towards any outcome.
    Also social media has defiantely changed the way we vote, many more elections have seperate campaigns for social media.
    I think that we should see both sides of an argument/vote because if not, we would be very one-sided (if you get what I mean).
    I do not think that social media is just for fun, it is also for work and communication.

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    1. Graveney-logo-250x250.jpg blessed_computer | Graveney School
      affable_weaver's comment 05 Mar 2019

      I am sorry if I came across as being biased but I think it would have been less likely for us to leave the EU if it was not that prevelant. Reading back my post, it does feel as though I talked more about the Fake News from the Leave side. Whether, you disagree with me or not, I think it was more prevelant on the Leave Side.

      Reply to this comment
  • Millbank-logo-250x250.jpg poetic_camel | Millbank Academy
    04 Mar 2019

    Do you think we are arguing with what we elected with ? Will Theresa May fight to stay in the EU or will she quit ?

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  • Graveney-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_volcano | Graveney School
    06 Mar 2019

    hey, mr blessed computer, I think your article was good however you need to not write about your opinion as much, but you did use a lot of facts which is good .

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  • Ormiston-Bushfield-logo-250x250.jpg quickwitted_engineer | Ormiston Bushfield Academy
    06 Mar 2019

    Indeed I do believe that social media has enhanced the dilemma of fake news however it certainly has not created it. Brexit has caused much confusion among the public and it has only been emphasized by the introduction of social media however I don't necessarily believe that the formation of varied opinions on the matter on behalf of the public necessarily a bad thing. Even though it may lead to confusion and division in society, it will be able to begin debates so that we can reach a deal that suits everybody.

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  • John-Ruskin-logo-250x250.jpg flowing_science | John Ruskin
    06 Mar 2019

    I'm not sure actually

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  • John-Ruskin-logo-250x250.jpg flowing_science | John Ruskin
    06 Mar 2019

    SO if it really is fake that means people voted for nothing

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  • Beverley-St-Nicholas-logo-250x250.jpg consistent_wolf | Beverley St Nicholas Primary School
    07 Mar 2019

    yes, i think social media is a big part of Brexit because people trust it even though it is fake.

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  • Richmond-Hill-logo-250x250.jpg outstanding_wolf | Richmond Hill Academy
    14 Mar 2019

    To be honest I think yeah it did really because fake news is one reason that can cause it

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  • Noel-Park-logo-250x250.jpg quickwitted_pie | Noel Park Primary School
    15 Mar 2019

    I think social media has had a big part in brexit

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  • Morley-Newlands-logo-250x250.jpg incredible_wombat | Morley Newlands Academy
    15 Apr 2019

    I think what people saw on social media influenced what they voted and saw. No one knew if it was fake or real news.

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