Hey, did you read that story about Monica Lewinsky getting offered a high-level job in the Trump administration? Or that Kanye West is actually a white kid from just outside Boise? It’s true. Has to be. Says so right here on my Facebook FB, +0.37% page. Like! Share!
Actually, no. Please don’t. Those aren’t real news stories. In fact, they’re not even real fake news stories. They might as well be, though, because they aren’t all that much more ridiculous than some of the whoppers that went viral in the past 12 months.
Yes, 2016 was the year fake news went mainstream and, as some — particularly in the Hillary Clinton camp — contend, potentially played a factor in deciding the presidency for Donald Trump.
According to BuzzFeed, the top-performing fake election news stories in the final three months of the presidential campaign generated more engagement than the top stories from major news outlets like the New York Times and the Washington Post. In at least one case, the danger of fake news turned very real and almost deadly.
Overall, an Ipsos Public Affairs study showed fake headlines fool American adults 75% of the time.
Since the election, fake news has become the talking point of the moment — but were you paying attention all year? Let’s find out.
Take this quiz and see if you can separate the faux “breaking news” developments that gained traction among millions of people this year from the ones we just completely made up:
This article was originally published on Marketwatch.