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Comment gagnent les fake news

WASHINGTON, DC – En réponse à la vague des fausses nouvelles (fake news) qui ont inondé la récente campagne présidentielle aux États-Unis, beaucoup d'attention a été consacrée à ceux qui produisent ou propagent ces histoires. L'hypothèse est que, si les médias ne communiquaient qu’à propos de « faits (établis) », les lecteurs et téléspectateurs seraient en mesure de tirer systématiquement la bonne conclusion d'une histoire donnée.

Pourtant, cette approche ne traite que la moitié de l'équation. C’est vrai, nous avons besoin que les médias d’actualité fournissent des informations fiables; mais il est également nécessaire que les destinataires soient des consommateurs avertis.

Depuis des dizaines d’années, le gouvernement américain a soutenu des programmes visant à favoriser l'indépendance des médias dans des pays autoritaires, pauvres ou dysfonctionnels. Or, ces programmes supposent implicitement que les États-Unis soient eux-mêmes à l'abri des problèmes que les citoyens d'autres pays rencontrent lorsqu'ils créent ou consomment de l'information. Aux États-Unis, nous supposons également que les médias américains, financés par la publicité, continueront de prospérer; que le journalisme indépendant est la norme; et que la plupart des gens sont capables de penser de manière critique et de faire des jugements pertinents sur l'information qu'ils reçoivent.

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