The human brain has evolved in a way that processes information both on the conscious level through rational analysis and the subconscious level through impressions or feelings.
In the interconnected world we are bombarded with so much information that it is impossible to process all of it on the rational level, so we increasingly rely on impressions and feelings to make sense of the world.
This is what makes “fake news” so dangerous. It is an attempt to bypass the rational processes and influence opinion on the level of feelings and impressions. This, of course, is nothing new.
Advertisers have developed this type of opinion manipulation into an art form in order to sell goods and services.
Tyrants and dictators have used the same technique to gain power and have committed some of the worst historical atrocities to ensure they maintain power.
Politicians use it to get elected.
Fake news works by disseminating information that is not easily verifiable and feeds into pre-existing fears and prejudices as easily digestible snapshots.
The solution is to provide equally easily digestible snapshots sourced from the common ground of verified and analyzable feedback.
See the examples below of how a vibrant common ground can deal with some of the most viral memes that currently feed pre-existing prejudices.