Social media has grown from something that was just used and entertainment and as a way to kill time to a mainstream industry worth billions of dollars. Just social media platforms alone have billions of people visiting them every day, publishing content on them and many of them are also making money through social media.
The important thing to note is that social media is also one of the biggest sources of information and millions of people rely on social media platforms to learn about this world that we all share. Here is what you can do to ensure the information you are reading is true and valid and that the broader audience is also getting the right information about you or your business.
Check the basic facts and figures first, do they correspond with what the reality is? If you are seeking information then ensure that the information that you are reading is published by a recognized and reliable publisher, platform, or author. Also, ensure that the sources that have been mentioned are verifiable. A good way to check for authenticity is to check how long the account has been active. Scammers tend to make fresh accounts, post false information and then never use that account again.
Those trying to sell false information will try and replicate an authentic site. This is the same strategy that cybercriminals use when they are phishing for their next target. Ensure that the site is legitimate, the page is authentic and it has all the things you would expect from a reliable source of information such as writer's information, editors' information, verifiable information, proper references, and a secure website to back it all up.
In many cases, you can tell whether a story or an article is fake if the information does not line up with the context of the site or it looks like it is out of place considering the rest of the information available at that source. For instance, if there is a site that talks about Android and is pro-Android it is reasonable to think that they will only publish the weakness of iOS. However, if this site is in some way talking down on Android and talking highly of how iOS has done a great job you can be sure that this is a scam post and the information is not reliable.
The whole purpose of having an article with legitimate sources and links and information of the publisher and everyone else involved in creating that information is so that you can verify it on your own. There are a number of fact-checking tools available and even a simple Google search will help you diagnose what is authentic and what isn't. Be sure to verify the information before accepting it as knowledge.
While it is great that social media is a free source of information, the problem is that the information that we find there is not always relevant or even true. Incorrect information is never acceptable and when it comes to business, it can ruin their reputation without any basis. If you are running a business or part of a business, it is critical that you verify that the information that is being published about the organization that you belong to is true. As there is no regulatory authority that governs the kind of information that is published on social media platforms you have to take things into your own hands.