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It’s True: Fake News is More Popular Than Ever

The top 50 fake stories of 2017 identified by BuzzFeed News generated a total of roughly 23.5 million shares

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BuzzFeed News did an analysis on Facebook’s effort to stop the spread of fake news and found that the 50 most viral fake news stories were more popular than the top 50 fake news stories of 2016. This brings up the question, how much progress is really being made in reducing this misinformation?

“The top 50 fake stories of 2017 identified by BuzzFeed News generated a total of roughly 23.5 million shares, reactions, and comments on Facebook between Jan. 1 and Dec. 9,” according to BuzzSumo.

However, Facebook ensures that they are more effective at stopping these hoaxes than ever before, limiting distribution of fake stories by 80% once it has been identified.

Here are the top five most popular fake news stories on Facebook of 2017:

1. Babysitter transported to hospital after inserting baby in her vagina: 1.2 million shares

2. FBI seizes over 3,000 penises during raid at morgue employee’s home: 1.1 million shares

3. Charles Manson to be released on parole to Johnson County, TX: 1.1 million shares

4. Police: Chester Bennington was murdered: 1 million shares

5. Morgue employee cremated by mistake while taking a nap: 993, 000 shares

Are you looking for digital journalism training and experience? Are you a journalism major who wants to take your career to the next level? CMN’s Digital Journalism course gives you real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to journalism influencers and mentors, and a great place to display your work. You can get academic credit too. Check out the Digital Journalism Course here.

Gigi Foster is a student at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. She's a midfielder on the women's soccer team and is studying ocean sciences.

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