Peddling of fake news either through print media, electronic and social media is killing news reporting. Writing of false news which changes or affect human lives negatively or positively is dangerous says Terrence Naidoo, a digital media and reality expert. “Be careful of the messages you send out there; look much into your content style. There are many dangers in the cyberspace, stolen identities, finances, and many other dangers said the digital media and reality expert.
Terrence Naidoo says the essential editorial standards of accuracy are slowly fading because of impartiality of reporting in the digital era. Fake news occurrence is being fueled by abuse of social media websites, where much of fake news is mostly published. The South African digital media and reality expert advises journalists to have goals for the message. “What are you trying to communicate? How do you make a difference? What’s in it for your audience? These are the questions you should ask yourself whenever you are writing an article, or you start to write an article,” says Terence Naidoo.
The sad issue of fake news is also condemned by Dr. Jeff Ramsay former secretary to the President of Botswana. “Can the public still trust journalists if the truth is not reported? Print media is slowly dying; people are reading news online, and this is surely landscaping the future of communicating”.
Pastor Mogotsi Baloyi applauds the current American President, Donald Trump for popularizing the fight against fake news. “The evidence can be the truth, but the story might not be true, says Pastor Mogotsi Baloyi.
Advocate Gerrie Nel, also from neighboring South Africa sites the hardships faced by law enforcers in locating cybercriminals. “We once had an operation in Johannesburg; we had located the location of the cyber criminal’s address in Hill brow. When we came to the house, there was only a computer and a phone, the criminal, was sitting somewhere in London”.
Botswana is one of the countries where there is abuse of social media, especially Facebook, where many of the posts are mostly demeaning or damaging to lives. First arrivals at crime scenes frequently use their smartphones to take photographs and post on Facebook before the law enforcers do their work. That act often exposes the crime scene to the criminals, who use social media information to avoid capture or defend themselves in courts.
By Meekaeel Siphambili
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