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The rise of ‘Fake News’ engulfed with fabricated and manipulated content is taking the world by its hand. This contaminated scoop has found its way to the doors of all our social media platforms. It stands out with a generic name known as online falsehoods. Online falsehoods is played to scar the individual or the organization deliberately with a swift goal of sowing discord and exploiting visible fault-lines.
The livid channels of online falsehoods have encouraged all readers to “question the influential messages”. ( Wan, 2007) Deliberate online falsehoods resides as a serious global problem not only in Singapore but worldwide too and can be spread through search tools, emails, links to homepages and even via messenger applications. Stirring up a cause of national panic, such ‘Fake News’ could deliver social menaces such as a rise of protest and violence which may eventually lead to the lost of lives. Many have adopted various social media platforms from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Blogs, LinkedIn and many more. The internet has become part and parcel of our lives. The ultimate drive in the use of social media has been brought forth through the use of different means of digital technologies such as smart phones, i-phones and many other comfortable devices such as tablets, laptops and even watches. Digital technology enables and encourages the use of social media online where people can stay in contact with each other, locate and find people they seek near or far. The different media platforms provide a profile page with biographical information and images for individuals as well as organizations. An impressive and powerful profile is key in any social media platform as its main goal is to “convince people to pay attention to your social media activities”. (Fitzpatrick & Kawasaki, 2014)
Social Media also carries the wrath of abuse where misuse of information can become a manipulated source of online falsehoods. The current legislation in Singapore such as the Sedition Act Cap 290, The Protection from Harassment Act Cap 256A as well as the Telecommunication Act Cap 256A have proven to have rapidity and versatility constraints. These laws cannot manage the infliction of deliberate online falsehoods. It can apprehend the perpetrator but it cannot pull the plug on the spread of the ‘fake news’ online as there is no means of redirection of the readers views with the presentation of true data and information. The Government would have to ensue legislation with education as a well-informed society will promote a cultivated culture of authenticity scrutiny. Society should be equipped with how the internet affects our legislations. (Messenger, 2015)
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