A major concern related to the Israel-Gaza conflict is the spread of fake news on social media.

As news of Palestinian terrorist group Hamas carrying out a deadly attack on Israel and Israel threatening retaliation began appearing on news networks and social media platforms, there was also a flood of misinformation and fake videos. In a society increasingly harnessing the power of technology, it is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish between reliable information and false claims or deliberately misleading video content. It is clear that many videos, social media posts and photographs allegedly related to the Israel-Hamas conflict have been deliberately shared to create confusion. This problem shows why verification efforts by journalists reporting on conflicts are important.

In the Digital News Report-2023 of the Reuters Institute of Oxford University, people from 46 countries were asked about their news reading habits. 56 percent of the people said that they are worried about differentiating between real and fake news regarding the internet. Additionally, nearly half of people surveyed in Slovakia, which borders Ukraine, said they had seen misinformation about the Ukraine conflict in the past week. Additionally, several media reports have stated that fake posts regarding the Israel-Hamas conflict have increased on Twitter (now known as ‘X’). Meanwhile, ‘The Guardian’ has shown the level of fake posts quoting data from Israeli surveillance company Sayabra. Sayabra claimed that many of the posts are being made from fake accounts using automated bots (software), which are quite active on Twitter, TikTok and other platforms. Sayabra scanned over 20 lakh photos, posts and videos. It claimed that 25 percent of the 1,62,000 profiles were fake.

How can verification work

Over the past few years, many traditional media organizations have created strong fact-checking wings, which are able to quickly identify fake news and videos. An example of this is ‘BBC Verify’. ‘BBC Verify’ aims to earn viewers’ trust by showing how its journalists know what they are reporting is true and accurate. The team of journalists uses modern editing tools and techniques to check and verify information, videos and photographs. BBC Verify is identifying videos and social media posts about Israel and Gaza that are found to be inaccurate or misleading.

AP Fact Check and Reuters have also launched campaigns against online misinformation. Reuters recently found out the authenticity of the video, which showed how Israel or Palestine are trying to create fake footage of death. The news agency reported that this video clip was shared in 2012. Reuters said in its analysis, “Claims made in the clip that Israel and Palestine are creating fake footage of the death are false.” It said that the clip was actually related to the filming of a short film ‘Empty Place’ Is, which was released on YouTube in 2022.

However, journalists around the world need to share information on violent conflict in a responsible, sensitive and timely manner. In the words of America’s leading journalist Edward Murrow, “The speed of communication is amazing to behold.” But it is also true that this speed can multiply the distribution of information that we know is not correct.

Disclaimer: IndiaTheNews has not edited this news. This news has been published from PTI-language feed.

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