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Verify Times Two

For verification of information, I recommend this guideline inside and outside of Twitter – ‘Verify x2’.  This means, for any critical news, find 2 separate reliable sources or 1 authenticated source to confirm the information.  Be sure those 2 sources do not lead back to a single source.  Here is a better way to define it; 
 

There are several types of sources

1) Official Source:  Example: USGS is official source for the USA (but not outside the USA)

2) Trusted Source:  A source that has been proven to be reliable and trustworthy for the pertinent event (example: CNN, disaster responders)

3) Unknown Source:  A source that has not yet been provent to be reliable, but has not been proven unreliable either

4) Untrusted Source:  A source that has provided inaccurate or misleading information

Suggested Guidelines Using These Sources

1) Official source or Aid Agency – consider it authenticated (but they get it wrong too)

2) Trusted Source – consider it reliable (but they get it wrong too)

3) Mainstream media – consider it reliable (but they get it wrong too)

4) Video or photo – consider it authenticated (be sure it is not an old event)

5) 2 separate sources (known or unknown) – consider it authenticated

6) 1 separate source (known or unknown) – consider it ‘unconfirmed’

Also, don’t follow or unfollow people based on any suspicians – watch, read and attempt to determine whether the information being shared is authenticated, reliable, unreliable or outright false and then report those findings in Twitter to debunk mis-information or confirm it as fact.  It is equally important to know what is being reported inaccurately (and stop it) as it is to report what is accurate.

 As a side note – In 2010, CNN reported a Tsunami warning for Chile when there was not a Tsunami warning issued.  USGS reported an earthquake in the Atlantic near Haiti that didn’t happen.  Even official sources and mainstream media make mistakes sometimes and so will we.

 

Avoid making judgements on the character or intentions of any individual or organization sharing information but use caution on retweeting any individual that may have in the past was either proven to or appeared to misrepresent fact.   

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