The vacuum left in many communities by the death of local newspapers hasn’t remained empty. Instead, networks of websites with local-sounding names are paying writers to craft stories that favor specific political candidates and messages. According to a New York Times investigation, the largest of these networks, whose focus is conservative politics, has a major Texas connection.
Tech expert Omar Gallaga told Texas Standard that these fake sites have names like The Des Moines Sun or Empire State Today. They’re run by a company called Media Metric that began operations in 2015 to serve political clients.
“They are full of misinformation [and] bias. They’re full of pay-to-play articles,” Gallaga said.
What you’ll hear in this segment:
– How fake news sites benefit political candidates and causes
– What makes these sites different from other news operations with partisan leanings
– How readers can find out if the site they’re reading is legit