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Evaluating News, Social Media & Other Online Sources: Tips for evaluating social media

Developing best practices when searching for and reading articles online

Media Literacy (Google Slides Presentation)

Evaluating Social Media

Social media can provide instant news faster than traditional news outlets or sources and can be a great wealth of information, but there is also an ever increasing need to verify and determine accuracy of this information. Here are some things to consider that can help determine authenticity:

  • Location of the source - Are they in the place they are tweeting or posting about? 
  • Network - Who is in their network and who follows them? Do I know this account? Do I know any of the accounts?
  • Content - Are other reputable sources posting about the same thing? In other words, can the information be supported from other sources?
  • Contextual updates - Do they usually post or tweet on this topic? If so, what did past or updated posts say? Do they fill in more details?
  • Age - What is the age of the account in question? Be wary of recently created accounts.
  • Reliability - After asking your self these questions, do you think the source of information is reliable?

Evaluating information. (n.d.). Retrieved January 24, 2017 from