«Fake News» – AREA 51 Case.
For this paper option, you will be looking at cultural effects of the interaction between social media, mainstream media, and journalism.
Ask questions that will give you a deep understanding of the story itself, the way fake news works, the narrative of your story, and the associated cultural implications:
Describe Area 51 story and context. What was the story about? Where does it appear to have come from (what media platform)? How far into mainstream media did this story go? Which types of mainstream media? Was there specific bias? When, if ever, was it debunked? How was it debunked?
Analyze the narrative in your chosen fake news story. What narrative form does it follow? What is the symbology in the story? Are there elements of the story that mean more to certain cultures/subcultures? What are they and why?
Using your story as a representative example, identify how fake news spreads. What are the elements of a fake news story that make readers want to share it? Does it spread more quickly through groups with a shared world view or with an opposite one? (example: do Trump supporters spread a fake news story about Trump more or do people from the other side of the political spectrum spread it more) What have researchers discovered about the nature of viral media and how does that relate to fake news?
Finally, using what you’ve learned about how media and society work come up with an action plan. What can be done to combat these stories? Remember that readers will be very reluctant to abandon established beliefs. Support your idea by looking at what experts suggest. What strategies would you employ to implement your plan?
PERSONAL NOTE: the following sources MUST be included in the paper as
Your paper must meet the following requirements :
1) 4-6 pages in length, Times New Roman, 12pt, double-spaced with standard margins and MLA8 citations.
2) A description of the research decisions you make along the way (examples: why you chose the questions you did, how you decided the expert opinions you chose were expert – qualifications).
3) Citations of the established research you used to help you draw conclusions (we will discuss this in class and have a short workshop on how to do this – please visit the writing center for additional help) – you must have a minimum of 4 sources in your final paper.
4) Your analysis and your conclusions.
5) PLAGIARISM (such as copying the whole text from the other source without citation, stealing idea from the web-site or a person, etc.) WILL BE STRICTLY REGULATED.
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