“That’s old news.”
A simple, three-word sentence that we use in our ‘offline vocabulary’ to tell someone that the story they are selling as a piece of juicy gossip is indeed, already old news. The Guardian recently developed a new feature which allows social media users to immediately recognise when a story that has been shared is actually "old news", which could limit the spread of misinformation online.
Misinformation isn’t only outright false reporting. Presenting outdated articles as current news is one way people try to intentionally mislead others into believing things that aren’t true.
When articles from The Guardian that are older than 12 months are shared on social media, the image and description accompanying those articles now shows the year they were published. Here’s what that looks like:
Can you see the impact? In the age of social media, many of us ambiently consume news by reading headlines and descriptions that appear in our news feeds. These visual changes give us more context around articles in our social media feeds, making them less likely to mislead people.
We’re planning on delivering a thank you card to The Guardian as a first step toward inspiring other news publishers to follow their lead.
Will you add your name to say “thanks!” to The Guardian and tell other publishers to do the same?