The story projected onto the screen claimed that Amazon’s office space was now larger than the actual Amazon rain forest.
University of Washington professor and Biology alumn Jevin West pointed to the projection and asked the audience: Is that real or fake? The audience laughed. It was clearly fake. That’s a minor annoyance, he said.
Then he showed another story about the Israeli defense minister saying Israel would destroy Pakistan with a nuclear attack. It too was fake, but Pakistan’s defense minister actually responded to the story last December and threatened to retaliate.
Fake news — and how to combat it — was the focus of The Seattle Times’ LiveWire event, “Fact vs. Fake: Fighting Back Against Fake News,” featuring a panel of technology and journalist experts. Among the panelists was West, an assistant professor in the University of Washington’s Information School. He codirects the DataLab and co-teaches a popular course “Calling BS in the Age of Big Data" with Biology Prof. Carl Bergstrom.
Read the full article in the Seattle Times.