Since the shock election of Donald Trump in the US, the mainstream media in both the States and the UK have been awash with reports about ‘fake news’ sites spreading misleading and entirely fictional news reports across social media.
Virtually all of the fake stories cited had a pro-Trump narrative, and were almost exclusively articles targeted at his supporters across the so-called alt-right (neo-Nazi) movement.
EvolvePolitics even debunked one such story that falsely (and hilariously) claimed that former Labour leader Ed Miliband was a ‘hitman and fixer’ for Hillary Clinton. To a British audience, this story was quite clearly untrue – but the piece went viral amongst Trump supporters in the US.
Up until now, the focus of the ‘fake news’ hysteria throughout the mainstream media has been squarely focused upon the emerging alt-right (neo-Nazi) movement in America.
The owner and founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, has also come under increasing pressure from the Establishment media to clamp down on the apparent scourge of ‘fake news’, with the BBC, amongst others, implying that such articles may have swung the US election in favour of Trump.
But now, back in the UK, MPs of the Labour Party are reported to have directly identified their first target in their own crusade against ‘fake news’.
You would have thought Labour’s primary target would be an outlet hostile to the Party such as The S*n, who recently faked an entire news report claiming Jeremy Corbyn had danced his way to the Cenotaph on Remembrance Day.
But according to BuzzFeed, Labour’s deputy leader Tom Watson has drafted in staunch anti-Corbyn MP Michael Dugher to work on an inquiry into ‘fake news’ across social media, and unsurprisingly, their first target is reported to be the biggest and fastest growing independent pro-Corbyn media outlet, The Canary.
Speaking as an unnamed source, a Labour insider working on the inquiry into ‘fake news’ reportedly told BuzzFeed:
It’s not about online and offline news, it’s about people who are actual journalists and people who are just making shit up
The BuzzFeed report goes on to state that several Labour sources within the inquiry highlighted The Canary’s influence across social media.
The Labour source ‘insisted’ that the move to target a pro-Corbyn site rather than an openly hostile and regular purveyor of fake anti-Corbyn news, such as The S*n, was ‘not an opportunistic intervention’.
Tom Watson was also quoted in the piece, saying:
I’ve never been afraid to take on the mainstream media when it abuses its power or acts illegally or unethically – by hacking phones, bribing public officials, or going through people’s bins. And complaints about the ‘biased MSM’ are sometimes justified. But the solution does not lie in the creation of a form of pseudo-journalism that is even more biased, less rigorous, and often based on downright lies
Despite the unnamed Labour source’s claims that this is not an ‘opportunistic’ decision, it’s clear that the current hysteria over ‘fake news’ has being commandeered by openly hostile anti-progressive MPs to try and silence alternative media outlets who are supportive of truly progressive, anti-Establishment politicians like Jeremy Corbyn.
In the coming weeks and months, alternative media outlets such as ourselves and The Canary will come under a sustained attack by those in the Establishment who wish to silence us and our truly progressive, anti-Establishment stance.
You’ve already seen how the Establishment treats whistle-blowers like Edward Snowden and Julian Assange – ordinary people who publish indisputable and damaging truths about the Establishment and their corruption on a regular basis.
Now the Establishment is coming for independent alternative media. Why? Because we’re incorruptible, and we won’t sing from the same hymn-sheet as the corporate media. And most of all – because we’re not going to let politicians get away with their utter horseshit any longer.
It’s little wonder there’s now a huge demand for alternative media given that the mainstream regularly fail to hold the establishment to account. And, ironically, in a capitalist society, if an industry is not doing its job properly, other companies will swoop in and replace them. The only reason sites like ours exist is because the mainstream media have failed to do their jobs properly.
The Establishment know their entire global system is on the precipice of change, and that the corrupt corporate greed that drives them could soon be a thing of the past. Now, more than ever, independent sites that regularly expose true injustice, inequality and corruption need the support of their readership.
We must ensure that the Establishment’s dreams of authoritarian Orwellian censorship are not allowed to happen.
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