What is different in this election is the enormous role that social media played. According to Will Oremus of Slate in his article, The Real Problem Behind the Fake News: Facebook is under fire for spreading falsehoods. But it’s getting away with a bigger lie.
In the wake of Donald Trump’s election as president, Facebook has taken justifiable heat for its role in spreading misinformation and propaganda about the candidates. In particular, its news feed algorithm fueled a cottage industry of fake and intentionally misleading “news” that skewed heavily anti–Hillary Clinton and pro-Trump, according to a BuzzFeed analysis. These falsehoods attracted far more user engagement, on average, than true stories from the same outlets and drowned out earnest attempts by dedicated fact-checking sites such as Snopes to debunk them.