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Analysis of Fake news in India

  • 08 January, 2021

  • 15 Min Read

Analysis of Fake news in India

  • Disinformation, or “fake news”, is a malaise that has been worsened by the infodemic of the social media age.
  • The reasons are four Ps of power, profit, profound public disagreement and platforms will continue to drive disinformation in 2021.
  • Fake news keep increasing because political parties have found out that if you put out organised disinformation, then any political narrative can be controlled.
  • At the same time, even though India has a federal structure, the parties which have been targeted are not doing anything about it.
  • They are not introducing any educational reform so that people can be more aware. So, what we are going to see is just a lot more disinformation that is rudimentary, but with a lot of people consuming it day in and day out, and forming their political opinion.
  • Business houses, news channel, social media and individual for its own fevers. Profit, TRP, and  money.

How is the spread of Fake News?

  • Bots, People like You, Trolls, and Microtargeting.
  • To be most effective, fake news needs to be spread through social media to reach receptive audiences.
  • We explore how bots and flesh-and-blood people spread fake news; how cookies are used to track people's visit to websites, create personality profiles, and show them fake news content that they are most receptive to.
  • Primarily old videos and images used to represent something in the present, especially if they have an element of violence or are highly politicised.

Examples:

  1. We saw massive spikes of disinformation on the anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act protests, elections.
  2. The Delhi riots of 2020, and the pandemic. In all of these issues, the kind of disinformation which was perpetrated was pretty simple, and not that difficult to debunk.
  3. It’s just the organised manner in which it was produced every single day — multiple false claims using photos, images and text.

What are the Laws and Regulation to Curb Fake News in India?

  • There is no specific law against fake news in India. Free publication of news flows from Article 19 of the Constitution guaranteeing Freedom of Speech.
  • Press Council of India: It is a regulatory body which can warn, admonish or censure the newspaper, the news agency, the editor or the journalist or disapprove the conduct of the editor or the journalist if it finds that a newspaper or a news agency has violated journalistic ethics.
  • Information Technology Act 2000: According to the Section 66 of the act, if any person, dishonestly or fraudulently, does any act referred to in Section 43 (damage to computer, computer system), shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years or with fine which may extend to five lakh rupees or with both.
  • Civil or Criminal Case for Defamation: It is another resort against fake news for individuals and groups hurt by the fake news. IPC Section 499 (defamation) and Section 500 (whoever defames another shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both) provide for a defamation suit.
  • Indian Penal Code: Section 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot) and Section 295 (injuring or defiling a place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class) can be invoked to guard against fake news.
  • News Broadcasters Association: It represents the private television news and current affairs broadcasters. The self-regulatory body probes complaints against electronic media.

Impact on Indian democracy :

  1. People’s faith in social, print and electronic media reduces which could affect the benefits of these Media as well the spirit of democracy as media being the fouth estate of democracy.
  2. It can disturb the social fabric of the society and tensions among communities persists for long times
  3. As communal tendencies emerge in politics due to the spread of fake news economic development has taken back seat
  4. Loyalist politics or tall promises to something akin to psychological warfare.
  5. Deep fakes are used by countries to target other countries and bring chaos or desired political changes
  6. As communal tendencies emerge in politics due to the spread of fake news economic development has taken back seat.

Conclusion:

  • Fake news has existed since the dawn of the printing press but in the age of the internet and social media, it has found a tremendous application. Manipulation of algorithms of social media and search engines is a global trend now.
  • Fake news has existed since the dawn of the printing press but in the age of the internet and social media, it has found a tremendous application. Manipulation of algorithms of social media and search engines is a global trend now.
  • The government is planning to conduct more public-education initiatives to make the population more aware of fake news.

Source: TH

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