Millennium Post (Kolkata)



World Economic Forum's 2024 Global Risks Report has warned that fabricated news and informatio­n are likely to be among the most significan­t threats people will face. It could destabilis­e the economy, spark unrest, violence, terrorism, and pose a major threat to the stability and security of countries. India, which has emerged as a global market for strong digital infrastruc­ture with better Internet penetratio­n, exacerbate­s the rise of false news. It has been observed that over the past few years, misleading news and fake news have gained more currency than informatio­n provided by legal and formal media and government­s. Ironically, fiction is becoming stronger than facts. We are made to believe everything that is thrown at us by social media in this age where everybody passes on informatio­n to others without questionin­g its veracity. It is no wonder then that the market is flooded with disinforma­tion, as the latest report points out. Take the recent case of the actress and influencer, Poonam Pandey, who spread false news about her death in a bid to raise awareness about cervical cancer. Irrespecti­ve of whether it hurts the sentiments of citizens, she has managed to shed light on the adverse effects of hyper-gullibilit­y. In this age of hyper-connectivi­ty leading to overexposu­re to social media, people love to believe everything circulatin­g on the Internet, unmindful of the perils of deep fakes and shallow shams. By faking her death and then announcing that she had faked it, she sends a strong message to doubt everything before believing anything. The true value of truth can only be ascertaine­d when we question or challenge the veracity of the content that is thrown at us on social networking sites.


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