UAlbany hosts panel discussion about ‘fake news’ for journalism students

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The University at Albany held a panel discussion on fake news that focused on what the term means and how to work around it.

The Hall of Fame room was filled with UAlbany students as journalists and professors Wednesday night to discuss the origin of fake news and how to better understand it. The aspiring journalists listened closely as journalists and college professors molded young minds.

The speakers said most of today’s “fake news” is found on social media, untrustworthy sources posing as authentic media outlets.

“It’s unbelievable that someone would believe anything now, especially our young people,” panel moderator Thomas Palmer said.

Palmer said a person’s definition of “fake news” depends on how the consumer perceives the information.

“We also have to educate the public on how to think, not what to think,” he said.

Zackery Cuzo is a junior majoring in journalism. He said hearing from experienced journalists helped him narrow down his career choices.

“I guess it’s like when your idea of taking things into perspective, biased, and like, your own personal opinion, what you actually experience firsthand, you have to take that into account,” he said.

As the discussion opened to the audience, some said “fake news” isn’t a new thing, and they referenced yellow journalism.

Students asked for advice on how to defend themselves if they were to ever be attacked by the phrase.

At the end of the panel discussion, journalism students said it helped them shape their perception on different media outlets.

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